How to format your references using the The Visual Computer citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for The Visual Computer. For a complete guide how to prepare your manuscript refer to the journal's instructions to authors.

Using reference management software

Typically you don't format your citations and bibliography by hand. The easiest way is to use a reference manager:

PaperpileThe citation style is built in and you can choose it in Settings > Citation Style or Paperpile > Citation Style in Google Docs.
EndNoteFind the style here: output styles overview
Mendeley, Zotero, Papers, and othersThe style is either built in or you can download a CSL file that is supported by most references management programs.
BibTeXBibTeX syles are usually part of a LaTeX template. Check the instructions to authors if the publisher offers a LaTeX template for this journal.

Journal articles

Those examples are references to articles in scholarly journals and how they are supposed to appear in your bibliography.

Not all journals organize their published articles in volumes and issues, so these fields are optional. Some electronic journals do not provide a page range, but instead list an article identifier. In a case like this it's safe to use the article identifier instead of the page range.

A journal article with 1 author
Messersmith, P.B.: Materials science. Holding on by a hard-shell thread. Science. 328, 180–181 (2010)
A journal article with 2 authors
Schwarzman, M.R., Wilson, M.P.: Science and regulation. New science for chemicals policy. Science. 326, 1065–1066 (2009)
A journal article with 3 authors
Biek, R., Drummond, A.J., Poss, M.: A virus reveals population structure and recent demographic history of its carnivore host. Science. 311, 538–541 (2006)
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Bass, R.B., Strop, P., Barclay, M., Rees, D.C.: Crystal structure of Escherichia coli MscS, a voltage-modulated and mechanosensitive channel. Science. 298, 1582–1587 (2002)

Books and book chapters

Here are examples of references for authored and edited books as well as book chapters.

An authored book
Weller, R.B., Hunter, H.J.A., Mann, M.W.: Clinical Dermatology. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK (2014)
An edited book
Zaraté, P., Kersten, G.E., Hernández, J.E. eds: Group Decision and Negotiation. A Process-Oriented View: Joint INFORMS-GDN and EWG-DSS International Conference, GDN 2014, Toulouse, France, June 10-13, 2014. Proceedings. Springer International Publishing, Cham (2014)
A chapter in an edited book
Markovich, N.M., Krieger, U.R.: Analysis of Packet Transmission Processes in Peer-to-Peer Networks by Statistical Inference Methods. In: Biersack, E., Callegari, C., and Matijasevic, M. (eds.) Data Traffic Monitoring and Analysis: From Measurement, Classification, and Anomaly Detection to Quality of Experience. pp. 104–119. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg (2013)

Web sites

Sometimes references to web sites should appear directly in the text rather than in the bibliography. Refer to the Instructions to authors for The Visual Computer.

Blog post
Andrew, E.: Viruses Are Highly Evolved Infectious Agents – Perfect To Go After Cancer,


This example shows the general structure used for government reports, technical reports, and scientific reports. If you can't locate the report number then it might be better to cite the report as a book. For reports it is usually not individual people that are credited as authors, but a governmental department or agency like "U. S. Food and Drug Administration" or "National Cancer Institute".

Government report
Government Accountability Office: International Aviation: Implications of Ratifying the Montreal Aviation Protocols. U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC (1990)

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Tabellario, C.M.: A plan to establish a financial counseling center on the campus of California State University, Long Beach, (2009)

News paper articles

Unlike scholarly journals, news papers do not usually have a volume and issue number. Instead, the full date and page number is required for a correct reference.

New York Times article
Savodnik, P.: If They Build It, Will The Kardashians Come?, (2013)

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in square brackets:

This sentence cites one reference [1].
This sentence cites two references [1, 2].
This sentence cites four references [1–4].

About the journal

Full journal titleThe Visual Computer
AbbreviationVis. Comput.
ISSN (print)0178-2789
ISSN (online)1432-2315
ScopeComputer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition

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