[OS X TeX] BibDesk crossref

david craig dac at panix.com
Sun Jul 19 23:20:34 EDT 2009


On Sun, 19 Jul 2009, Adam R. Maxwell wrote:
> I've personally never tried editing the name of a default field until 
> now, so it helps to have that additional information!  In the version 
> I'm running here, if I rename the title field of an @article, it 
> renames and then adds and empty title field.  So you're correct; 
> essentially you can't remove/rename a default field for a type.  This 
> is a bit odd; I think it would make more sense if those weren't 
> editable at all.

Yes, I saw that, too, but didn't mention it.  It makes a certain degree 
of sense for the default fields to be resistant to change.  One way or 
another the interface should make it clear which fields are editable and 
which aren't.

>>> Isn't there a "+" button at the bottom of your editor window?  Did you 
>>> hide the status bar?
>> No, and no -- not intentionally anyway.   That was the missing bit. Makes 
>> more sense now.
> Okay, that would be confusing if the default is to have it hidden for 
> new users, especially since not all of those actions are available 
> from the main menu.  I think that's a bug.

I ran into this within fifteen minutes of firing up BibDesk for the very 
first time, and I didn't intentionally hide the status bar.  This raises 
a question, though: if functionality that can't be otherwise accessed is 
placed there, should it be POSSIBLE to hide it?

A couple of unrelated thoughts/observations:

1. Access to global macros shouldn't be buried in the preferences. 
There should be a menu item for them next to the one for the document's 
macros.  There should also be an item to write global macros into the 
current bib file -- at least, those that are used in it.

2. Here's something to think about: expanding BibDesk's capabilities as 
a global reference manager.  In particular, it would make sense to 
maintain a master database of references, and have tools for copying 
pubs from that master database to a particular bib file, or pull refs 
from a bib file into the master database.  (I understand, of course, 
that one is free to create a bib file and employ it as a master file -- 
I'm in the process of doing that now -- but I still think it would make 
sense to give BibDesk the capability to function mroe naturally as an 
iTunes-like global manager of references, providing, for example, 
natural tools for browsing the master database and creating new bib 
files (a la playlists) from it, with necessary macros automatically 
copied in and so forth.)

Just a thought!

David Craig


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