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Creating a Manubot CSL that perfects the format of bibliographic entries #53
Currently, Manubot uses
The style I envision uses numbers for citations, i.e. renders like
Bibliographic entries would look something like:
Ideally, author names would be in smaller text and hyperlink to ORCID records when available. The smallness of text here is an exaggeration (limited formatting options).
Compared to historical bibliographic formats, the following points are stressed:
There's a webapp to generate a custom CSL style. I've found it a bit difficult to use, but its probably the way to go.
One question is whether to print out the URL rather than hyperlink the title. The benefit of showing the URL would be for readers who have printed the PDF. However, if a reader is at a computer, they could always go back to the digital version with the hyperlink.
I like the idea of a custom CSL style. We should emphasize what we think is important and not be beholden to tradition.
I generally agree with your points above. Alternative viewpoints on the following:
True, but we can't always reliably get more precise information. Metadata for some older manuscripts includes placeholder days and months in some cases (e.g. January 1 of the year). For some URLs, I doubt our ability to automatically retrieve accurate date stamps.
This may be reader-dependent. I personally remember more past literature based on authors and dates than titles.
I don't see a need to print the URL. As a reader, I find it easier to search for the title than to type in a URL in most cases.
added a commit
Sep 4, 2017
referenced this issue
Sep 7, 2017
I noticed in the meta review manuscript that some of the reference whitespace was missing when CSL fields were absent. See references 19 and 21 for examples in this version of the pdf.
Is that controlled by or fixable in the CSL file? It may only affect references that do not have a date.
Edit: It may be the lack of authors that is the problem, not the lack of date.
Yeah this bugged me too when I was created the revised CSL. I played around a bunch and couldn't find a solution that would always perform appropriate newlines. I can look into a solution. We may have to print "No date", "Date missing", or "In press" as a workaround. Is that acceptable?
In general, when there's no date or other missing metadata, it's because the CSL is incomplete. So generally you should manually override this metadata. But yes, I agree that even with incompete metadata we should provide an aesthetic display.
"In press" seems journal-specific, and not a good match for some of the resources we may link to. "No date" sounds better to me. Or can we use " " as the default?
Coming up with a placeholder for missing authors is even harder. It's not that content has "No authors", but rather that we don't know the specific author(s) to attribute sometimes.