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I am using a .bst bibliography style file that apparently is a derivative of the apalike.bst style. As I have learned, it is supposed to typeset the titles of all references in a lowercase manner (except for those parts put in curly brackets, of course).

Funny thing is: This is not happening, i.e. the titles appear as put into the .bib file.

This seems to be the responsible code snippet:

FUNCTION {format.title}
{ title empty$
    { "" }
%    { title "t" change.case$ }
    { title }
  if$
}

Of course, I have already tried to uncomment the line with the change.case command. This, however, only gave me plenty of error messages following this style:

while executing---line 1376 of file apalike-derivative.bst
`'62' is a function literal, not an integer, for entry Zhu2017
while executing---line 1376 of file apalike-derivative.bst
0 is an integer literal, not a string or missing field, for entry Zhu2017

With the respective line commented, no error messages occur, but, as mentioned, the titles are not set in lowercase letters.

How can I make this right, i.e. keep this style file, but apply the proper adaptions to get the titles set in a lowercase manner?

2
  • 1
    You do not only have to uncomment the { title "t" change.case$ } line you also have to comment out the following { title } line. You can only have two { ... } groups in an if$ after the condition (title empty$).
    – moewe
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 17:58
  • Would you care to post this as an answer? Because this was exactly the solution. Thank you so much!
    – Michael
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 18:00

1 Answer 1

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You need to uncomment the { title "t" change.case$ }, but you also need to comment out the { title } so that the code reads

FUNCTION {format.title}
{ title empty$
    { "" }
    { title "t" change.case$ }
%   { title }
  if$
}

or simplified without comments

FUNCTION {format.title}
{ title empty$
    { "" }
    { title "t" change.case$ }
  if$
}

The syntax of a conditional in the BibTeX language is

<condition>
  { <true branch> }
  { <false branch> }
if$

If you have three braced groups between the condition and the if$, BibTeX gets confused.

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