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Commands Reference, Volume 3

indxbib Command


Builds an inverted index for a bibliography.


indxbib Database ...


The indxbib command makes an inverted index to the named database (or files) for use by the lookbib and refer commands. These files contain bibliographic references (or other kinds of information) separated by blank lines.

Note: The indxbib command expects the database to exist in the current working directory.

A bibliographic reference is a set of lines, constituting fields of bibliographic information. Each field starts on a line beginning with a % (percent sign), followed by a key letter, then a space character, and finally the contents of the field, which can continue until the next line starting with a % (percent sign). All key letters are ASCII characters.

The indxbib command is a shell script that calls the /usr/lib/refer/mkey and /usr/lib/refer/inv files. The first program, mkey, performs the following operations:

  1. Truncates words (delimited by blanks or tabs) to six characters.
  2. Maps uppercase to lowercase characters.
  3. Discards words shorter than three characters.
  4. Discards the most commonly used words according to an existing ign file. An English language file, /usr/lib/eign, has been provided with a list of common English words. It is suggested, but not necessary, that users create their own files, named ign, consisting of language-specific common words. This file, if created, should exist in the /usr/lib/nls/msg/$LANG directory.
  5. Discards numbers (dates) less than 1900 or greater than 2099.

    Note: All dates should be indexed because many disciplines refer to literature written in the 1800s or earlier.

These parameters can be changed. (For more information, see Lesk, M.E. Some Applications of Inverted Indexes on the UNIX System.)

The second program, inv, creates in the working directory an entry file (.ia), a posting file (.ib), and a tag file (.ic).


/usr/lib/eign Contains the default list of common words the indxbib command discards while processing.
Database.ia Contains the entry file.
Database.ib Contains the posting file.
Database.ic Contains the tag file.

Environment Variables

NLSPATH Refers to a list of directory names where the message catalog files can be found.

Related Information

The addbib command, lookbib command, refer command, roffbib command, sortbib command.

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