Further, because components can contain any number of elements, it is possible to
build up rather complex components that capture a lot of rules about a format. For
example, some formats begin each bibliography entry with the authors followed by
the year of publication, and the year should be the year of original publication, if
different from the year of re-publication. Using conditional tests such as “reference
has an original date of publication,” you can create a component that always works,
no matter what the details of any particular reference may be.
To create a new component:
1. Click on the Show: Components radio button at the top of the window;
2. Click on the [create new component] link at the top of the preview pane
3. Provide a name for the new component in the sheet that appears;
4. Edit the definition using the details drawer.
Creating a New Component
Once this has been done, you will have access to the new component in the list of
element types in the drawer, so you can use it just like any built-in element type.
Example: Author Lists
As a simple example of a component, consider the case where the format for each
of the reference types uses the same format for the list of authors. While there are
many differences between the format for a book and the format for a journal article,
the format for the list of authors in both cases would typically be identical.
One could just add an Authors element to both the Book and Journal Article formats,
and specify the same rules in both places (e.g., name format, list format,
punctuation, use of et al., etc.). Or you could create an Author List component,
specify the rules inside that component, and just use the component instead of an
Authors element in each of the reference type formats.