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Inline Bibliographies

This describes how to maintain an inline bibliography in LaTeX (and Lyx).

Preamble

LaTeX is a wonderful tool for maintaining bibliographies (or lists of references). While having unprecedented power among text processing tools, there are times where you need finer-grain control than maintaining an entire list of bibliographic items.

For example, when preparing a biographical sketch for NSF or a dossier for one's tenure case, bib items are usually placed in groups.

Tools

  • BibDesk is a wonderful tool for maintaining bibliographies. It's native storage is BibTeX, so you don't have to worry about maintaining a proprietary format.
  • Lyx is a wonderful tool that provides a WYSIWYM interface to LaTeX.

Steps for maintaining an inline bibliography

  1. Start by selecting the bibliographic items of interest. You can do this in BibDesk by highlighting the items to be selected. (This only works in a beta right now but will be released shortly.)
  2. Once the items are selected, right click and copy as LaTeX. If you are using the Lyx front end for LaTeX, you can click on the TeX button to create an inline TeX section. Then go to the Edit menu and Paste External Selection as Lines or Paragraphs (it doesn't matter as it's just a blob of code.
  3. What you are copying is actually the BBL output that comes from running BibTeX. BibDesk does this for you but you could run BibTeX on your file and just copy the bib items but make sure to surround it with thebibliography environment to follow the rest of the instructions as is.
    \begin{thebibliography}{1}
    
    \bibitem{gmf-icast}
    W.~T. O'Connell, G.~K. Thiruvathukal, and T.~W. Christopher.
    \newblock {A Generic Modeling Framework for Heterogeneous Parallel and
      Distributed Computing}.
    \newblock In {\em International Conference on Advance Science and Technology
      1994 (ICAST 1994), AT\&T Bell Laboratories}, 1994.
    
    \bibitem{dmemo-ismm-iasted}
    W.~T. O'Connell, G.~K. Thiruvathukal, and T.~W. Christopher.
    \newblock {Distributed Memo: Heterogeneously Distributed Directories of
      Unordered Queues}.
    \newblock In {\em Sixth ISMM/IASTED Conference on Parallel and Distributed
      Computing Systems}, 1994.
    
    \bibitem{memo-icpp}
    W.~T. O'Connell, G.~K. Thiruvathukal, and T.~W. Christopher.
    \newblock {Memo: An Environment to Support Heterogeneous Parallel and
      Distributed Processing}.
    \newblock In {\em International Conference on Parallel Processing}, 1994.
    
    \bibitem{dmemo-ijmm-journal}
    W.~T. O'Connell, G.~K. Thiruvathukal, and T.~W. Christopher.
    \newblock {Distributed Memo: Heterogeneously Distributed Directories of
      Unordered Queues}.
    \newblock In {\em International Journal of Mini and Microcomputers}, 1997.
    \end{thebibliography}
    
    
  4. Now you will want to massage this a bit. If you copy this code *as is* into your LaTeX document, you'll find that a section named *References* or *Bibliography* (with the large section font) is created. You might not want this, especially when you just want a list.
  5. The simplest way to fix this is to use the *itemize* or *enumerate* environment (on which *thebibliography* is based). By doing so, however, you also need to make sure that the \bibitem is defined as a regular \item as follows:
  6. \renewcommand{\bibitem}[1]{\item}
    
  7. Then you simply change {thebibliography> to {itemize} or {enumerate}.
  8. My example above is reworked as follows:
  9. 
    \renewcommand{\bibitem}[1]{\item}
    \begin{enumerate}{1}
    
    \bibitem{gmf-icast}
    W.~T. O'Connell, G.~K. Thiruvathukal, and T.~W. Christopher.
    \newblock {A Generic Modeling Framework for Heterogeneous Parallel and
      Distributed Computing}.
    \newblock In {\em International Conference on Advance Science and Technology
      1994 (ICAST 1994), AT\&T Bell Laboratories}, 1994.
    
    ... (all other \bibitem instances are the same)
    
    \end{enumerate}
    
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