Astrobib: A Literature Referencing System Compatible with the AAS/WGAS Latex Macros

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Session 118 -- WGAS
Oral presentation, Saturday, January 15, 10:15-11:45, Salon VI Room (Crystal Gateway)

[118.02] Astrobib: A Literature Referencing System Compatible with the AAS/WGAS Latex Macros

H.C.Ferguson (STScI)

Perhaps the most tedious part of preparing an article is dealing with the references: keeping track of which have been cited and formatting the reference section at the end of the paper in accordance with a particular journal's requirements. This package aims to simplify this task, while remaining compatible with the AAS/WGAS latex macros (as well as the latex styles distributed by A\&A and MNRAS). For lack of a better name, we call this package Astrobib .

The astrobib package can be used on two levels. The first uses the standard ``bibtex'' software to collect all the references cited in the text and format the reference list at the end of the paper according to the style requirements of the Journal. All we have done here is to modify the public-domain ``chicago.bst'' bibtex styles to produce citations in the formats required by ApJ, AJ, A\&A, MNRAS, and PASP. All implement, to first order, the formats for references specified in 1992 or 1993 ``Instructions to Authors'' of the different journals. If the paper is rejected by MNRAS, changing three lines will allow it to be printed in ApJ format.

The second level overcomes two drawbacks bibtex: the tedious use of braces and commas in bibliography database and the requirement that the author remember citation keys, typically constructed of the authors' initials and the date. With Astrobib the bibliography is kept in a much simpler database (based on the Unix `refer' style) and a couple of Unix-specific programs parse the database into bibtex format and preprocess the text to convert ``loose'' citations into bibtex citation keys. Loose citations allow the author to cite just a few authors (in any order) and perhaps the year or a word of the title of the conference proceedings. Documentation and instructions for electronic access to the package will be available at the meeting. Support for this work was provided by the SERC and by NASA through grant HF1043 awarded by the STScI which is operated by AURA, Inc., for NASA under contract NAS5-26555.

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