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Monday, 15 January 2007

Problem with vertical space

When PmWiki enhanced the way it handles vertical spacing, to eliminate the use of empty <p class='vspace'></p> tags, this changed the way $HTMLVSpace behaves. Over the holidays, we discovered that this breaks some of Wikipublisher’s features. That’s because:

  • in the old way, $HTMLVSpace was initialised to <p class='vspace'></p>
  • in the new way, $HTMLVSpace is initialised to ‘<vspace>’ and a markup rule translates this into HTML before restoring any output tucked away inside a Keep call
  • this means anywhere we use $HTMLVSpace inside a piece of Keep text, it appears in the output as <vspace>; sigh…

The main area affected seems to be in the way we turn search results into a form, allowing an information seeker to publish search results. The fix is to add a posteval markup rule that changes any outstanding <vspace> values into <div class='vspace'></div>. This is under investigation and subject to further testing.

Trial citation markup

Work is under way to develop a simple way of recording and using academic citations (references) to provide bibliographies for wiki pages. It supports numeric and author–year citation styles. The basic idea is that an author writes “cite(key)” to refer to a citation and lists citations by key in a (:bib:) ... (:bibend:) block. Features include:

  • share one bibliography page across multiple wiki pages or define citations on a per page basis
  • edit individual citations within a bib block using a Web form
  • modify the appearance of citation link text to include prefixes and suffixes, show or suppress brackets, show author only or year only, etc.
  • turn citation keys into default link text or specify the link text in the bib block, which will then be used wherever that item is cited
  • control the sort order of the bibliography, e.g. alphabetic, order cited, unsorted …

The HTML version of this feature is working well. The pdf version doesn’t work at all at this point. Generating a pdf of a page with citations produces an empty bibliography. We are seeking a source of funding to develop the pdf side and are investigating work-arounds that might produce something usable from the current typesetting server version.

More information is at Bibliographies.User Guide.

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Page last modified on 15 January 2007 at 09:15 PM