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Subject: Re: DOCBOOK-APPS: Re: Bibliography management/BibTex equivalent

At 02.01.25 11:48 -0800, Bernd Kreimeier wrote:
>Norman Walsh wrote:
> > Do the rules ever reorder fields?
>The styles do. The order (author first, or title first, or year...)
>depends on the journal or proceedings you submit to. The elements
>(records) can be in a fixed order (I honestly don't remember, I
>don't think I ever changed the order).

The records in the .bib database can be in any order, and the fields in the 
records can be in any order (within the record, anyway :-).  Only the 
intermediate file produced by BibTeX specifically for the 
document/style/database combination has order significant, and that is 
purely visual markup.

>I find the notion somewhat scary though. I know (e.g. from the
>QWERTZ/LinuxDoc days) that having elements in the order in which
>they will be printed makes things easier, but it just doesn't work
>for references due to the styles possibly changing that order, and
>it's a scary way for procedural markup to creep into the descriptive
>markup, innit?

Order of records in the final output, and of fields within the records (in 
the final output) is entirely due to the processing of the database.
 > How does BibTeX deal with punctuation around optional entries?
>It doesn't, IIRC. Can't remember whether you get a bibtex processing
>error, or whether they are just ignored. That's why I find the
>"cooked" entries so scary - another example of procedural markup
>creeping in as a convenience. That's all fine if your bibliography
>entries never ever have to confirm with a different style, but if you
>publish articles at conferences or in journals, it's bound to happen.

The database file does not distinguish between them; fields that are 
required in one style could in theory be ignored in another (although the 
common styles keep a pretty consistent set of requried/optional/ignored for 
the standard entries).  Punctuation is inserted in the .bbl file by BibTeX 
according to the rules in the style sheet.

I understand BibTeX better than I do DocBook.  But I think the appropriate 
correspondence is that the .bib file is the equivalent of the structural 
markup in DocBook; it encodes the meaning of its elements, not their 
presentation.  The .bbl file produced by BibTeX (based on the document 
citations, database, and style file) contains only "cooked" entries.

Mark Wroth

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