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BibPort: Creating Bibliographic References

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Parsing a Citation

Distinguishing the particular type of a reference—a journal, conference paper, or book—within a specific citation format requires an inference to be made based on textual cues appearing in each entry. The inference of the reference type can be extended to differentiate between numerous citation formats. When possible, users may be consulted to disambiguate the conflicts resulting from typographical errors.

Ambiguity in a Typical Reference List Entry

Figure 1 is a typical entry in a reference list formatted in APA style. In this entry, the author "A. Provenzale," has a paper entitled "Page Swapping is Bad. What You Should Know" that has been accepted by "Memory Management and You: Novel Memory Management Techniques." A noticeable problem occurs in this entry due to the title containing two sentences. It is impossible for the parser to determine where the specific title ends and journal name begins. Underlining the journal name is therefore crucial to the successful interpretation of the reference. This illustrates the need for the parser to understand the types of visual formatting cues that can be found in reference lists. The capability to distinguish visual cues requires at least rudimentary understanding of text formatting (underlining and italicization) of a wordprocessor's file format.

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Figure 1: APA-style citation, with and without formatting.

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