[OS X TeX] Bibliography: pedestrian way works too...

Bruno Voisin bvoisin at mac.com
Wed Jan 12 13:01:25 EST 2005

Le 12 janv. 05, à 18:22, Douglas Hemmick a écrit :

> Nobody likes the "pedestrian" way for bibliographies...?
> You don't need a separate program like BibTeX, or a separate
> data file, but just put your bibliographic listings inside of
> the actual .tex file itself.

That's what I do. At the time natbib and other similar customizable 
bibliographical packages weren't available, and the only solution was 
to explore Nelson Beebe's archive of bibliographical styles and adapt 
what was there, I found no available style would provide the exact 
presentations -- of author-date type in my field -- that were required 
by specific scientific journals (complicated rules involving, for 
example, no comma between author and year, commas between successive 
years, semi-columns between different papers, with variations depending 
on context).

Then I turned to doing everything manually, writing the references in 
full in the body of the documents, and doing cut-and-paste and editing 
from files where I had collected a large number of references. I have 
always had the impression that, for somebody writing, say, not more 
than 4 or 5 documents including bibliographies per year, it was 
actually more time-consuming to learn BibTeX and get it to produce a 
specific bibliographical style, than to just write things manually 
oneself and pay a lot of attention to chasing misprints and omissions.

That said, with the advent of tools like BibDesk (and previously 
HyperBibTeX) for managing references with a GUI, with the existence of 
customizable styles like natbib, and possibly with the possibility to 
import directly references in BibTeX format from databases and 
scientific publishers' sites, and possibly with the generalized use of 
DOIs (Document Object Identifiers), that statement may very well become 


Bruno Voisin
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