[OS X TeX] \ifthenelse in \author ?

Ross Moore ross at ics.mq.edu.au
Mon Feb 7 18:37:31 EST 2005

Hi Bruno, and Josep,

On 08/02/2005, at 9:51 AM, Bruno Voisin wrote:

> Le 2 févr. 05, à 16:49, Josep M.Font a écrit :
>> By the way, I don't know if this is a bug or whatever: Inside 
>> \author{...} you can break a line with a \\, and even with a \\[1ex], 
>> but it disregards the additional space. But if you use \\[0.5ex] then 
>> \maketitle complains "missing number, treated as 0..."! Just being 
>> curious...

Well, the logical meaning of \author is to indicate that it's argument
refers to who is the author. It's only a happy accident that you can
split this information across several lines, breaking at specified 

If you want more typographic control, on the front page of your output,
then you should look at modifying the macro that handles its layout.
Look in the .cls file (e.g. article.cls, book.cls, etc.  according
to which document-class you are using) for where  \@author  is *used*.

If you try to affect layout via the argument to \author then you can
get unwanted effects elsewhere; e.g.
  amsart.cls   puts the author names and addresses also at the end.

If you have a `Proceedings' class which automatically collects the 
author names
for a separate listing, then these entries will be mucked-up by such 
extra markup.

> Very often this error message indicates that a fragile command is used 
> and needs to be protected. Also, does 
> \author{\protect\ifthenelse{...}} fix your problem?

Why do you need to delay the decision on what to use for the \author ?
Can you not instead use:


to give the alternative contents, and avoid complications with markup
that isn't really author information, but decision-making macros?

Hope this helps,


Ross Moore                                         ross at maths.mq.edu.au
Mathematics Department                             office: E7A-419
Macquarie University                               tel: +61 +2 9850 8955
Sydney, Australia                                  fax: +61 +2 9850 8114

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