[OS X TeX] BibTeX Questions.

Stephan Hochhaus stephan at yauh.de
Sun Jan 9 17:52:02 EST 2005

Am 09.01.2005 um 17:54 schrieb Adam R. Maxwell:

> Okay, to satisfy my curiosity, how should BibDesk handle required 
> fields?  I'm so used to BD that JabRef is hard to use, but there's 
> always room for improvement.
BibDesk does a great job at making data entry simple and 
straightforward. However, a newbie will most likely not know which 
fields are required and which are optional with bibtex or a certain bst 
style. BibDesk highlights the names of fields that are mandatory in 
red, but I came across some issues when changing the entry type a 
couple of times and the updating of the required fields indicator in 
former versions (I don't think this is an issue with the latest version 
The one thing where JabRef semi-"shines" in data entry is when it comes 
to the identification of the mandatory fields. There are some tabs that 
will only show you "required fields", "optional fields" and "general 
fields". This is very helpful when you're starting your journey through 
BibTeX but it somewhat slows you down when you already know what you 
are doing. So I think JabRef makes the learning phase a bit easier but 
later on it rather slows you down.

If you realy wanted to improve BibDesk in regards of required fields 
then it would be great if there were three colors: red for required 
fields, green for optional fields and maybe black for the rest. And 
sometimes a bst does not require a certain field in my setup, so it 
would be really nice if that indicator could be based on different 
bibtex packages like natbib or jurabib. But that is nothing I really 
need, so far I have always been able to get along just fine (which is 
why I wrote I am hooked on BibDesk).


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