January 13, 2008

BibDesk and TextMate don’t play nice together…

Posted in Uncategorized at 4:52 pm by a11en

Well, this may be the nail in the coffin for my use of TextMate for LaTeX writing.  It’s quite sad as well, because I was beginning to like things like drag-n-drop pictures to \includegraphics{} etc.  But, there’s one thing I desperately love about BibDesk and that’s it’s autocompletion feature- it works so well in all cocoa windows.  Sure, there’s some crazy code that parses your bibtex file itself within TextMate, but honestly, it can’t possibly be as nice as BibDesk’s feature.  There’s also an Applescript work around, which is nice but horrendously ugly and not inline on the screen.

It’s quite sad, really, because I was starting to have high-hopes for TextMate as a LaTeX editor.  I guess I shouldn’t try and change things… iTeXMac is working well for me, and it has visual Math buttons etc., for help with odd-ball insertions (won’t have to memorize a 30+ list of completions for math-mode).

Ugh.  I want the best of both worlds… but it appears that TextMate doesn’t play nice with NSText alterations- which I believe is how the input manager plugin works for BibDesk.  Appears they just are completely incompatible.

I rarely write enough code to make TextMate something that I want to keep around… I was just beginning to understand TextMate’s abilities as well… but, it’s a bit to VI in some ways for me… and the die-hard VI users will likely just stick with VI…

We’ll see how I come to terms with this.  Not having the quick and easy auto-completion is a killer for me… I write and cite with almost the same breath in my TeX documents.

sucks big time…


  1. Mark Kalderon said,

    Have you tried TM’s Ref-TeX style citation — control { ?

    Also, you might have a look at this and some other messages on the thread:


  2. CHE said,

    I share the feeling, but I get the impression from following the BibDesk-Users list that Adam and the other developers at BibDesk would very much like to restore the auto-completion functionality that was broken in the move from OS X 10.4 to 10.5. You can see how nicely it works in the TextMate LaTeX screencast #3, which must be in 10.4. At least, I have faith that one way or another, with developments on various sides, we’ll see autocompletion from BibDesk sometime after not too long. Use TeXShop for a while until things shake out.

  3. a11en said,

    Hey Che! Thanks for suggesting me go find this! I think I may have solved my autocompletion problem… now if only Ruby would play nice with softlinks… it turns out to make autocomplete work, I had to have the actual .bib file (not just a softlink) in the same directory. So, I can do a bit of autocompletion now, thank God.

    Here’s some more helpful info on this type of thing- excellent blog post here:

  4. Christiaan said,

    Adam maxwell has written a small plugin to bring BibDesk auto-completion to TextMate, see

  5. Christiaan said,

    For some reason the link didn’t make it, look at the BibDesk Wiki: http://bibdesk.sourceforge.net/wiki/index.php/Other_Applications

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