[OS X TeX] BibDesk and CrossRefs

Adam R. Maxwell amaxwell at mac.com
Sun Jul 31 00:10:32 EDT 2005

On Jul 30, 2005, at 19:17, Jon Hanson wrote:

>>> I finally have a bibtex database that has a large number of entries
>>> that are candidates for using the crossref feature, but I am having
>>> a bit of trouble understanding how BibDesk 1.1.2 deals with
>>> automatically copying information into the child entry.
>> < snip >
>> Well, it seems that I was doing something wrong, but I have no idea
>> what it was. the title is being copied correctly into booktitle when
>> I create a book and creating the child copies correctly.
>> I deleted my preferences before and it still did not work correctly.
>> I logged out then in after deleting the prefs and it works correctly.
>> Corrupted prefs, I guess.
> You are not crazy!  This is the same phenomenon that I posted about  
> a few weeks ago. See the digests of July 2-4.  In short, like me,  
> the only thing that you did "wrong" was that you created a child  
> record from a parent that did not have a Booktitle field.   
> Apparently, due to the way BibTeX operates, it has always been  
> necessary to enter Booktitle in any book record that you use as a  
> parent.
> With the preferences that you have set, BibDesk will copy Title  
> down to Booktitle when you create a *new* book record, but it will  
> not add Booktitle, if missing, to an existing book record when you  
> create a child from it.

That is correct, and this is the intended behavior (according to the  
developer who implemented it).  He says that we only add the  
Booktitle to the potential parent when its Title field is changed;  
observing all the possible ways a relation could change would cause a  
massive slowdown.

> (Side note: When operating as designed, BibDesk links the Title  
> field in the child record from the Title field in the parent.  I  
> regard this as undesirable, since the reason for the record being a  
> child in the first place is that its title is *not* the same as the  
> parent's.  My only experience, however, is with the book-->  
> incollection combination.  Could more experienced users please  
> weigh in on whether there are cases when one would want Title in  
> the child filled from Title in the parent?)

We're not selective there; presumably the user is going to change  
that field.  We don't inherit the metadata fields such as date added/ 
modified, because they're added by BibDesk.

> I fixed the problem by re-entering the parent records, though I  
> guess I could have added the Booktitle field manually with a text  
> editor.  Perhaps there is a way that this could be automated with  
> some kind of script that would add Booktitle to all existing book  
> records that do not yet have it, filling Booktitle with the  
> contents of Title?

There was an AppleScript posted on the BibDesk developer list for  
this purpose, I think; it shouldn't be difficult to write a script if  
you can't find that one, given the scripts here <http:// 
bibdesk.sourceforge.net/wiki/index.php/BibDesk_Applescripts> for  

-- Adam
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