taverndweller bibliographic style


The taverndweller bibliographic style (tbs) is loosely based on the 7th edn. of the MLA Handbook's1 list of works cited style. However, MLA's style, as well as the other main bibliographic styles, are inadequate for online bibliography. If one wants to write, say, Javascript to deal with multiple entries by the same author beginning with "---", one may of course do that. If one wants to let HTML and microdata do the heavy lifting something else is needed. So under my system you will list the author's full name for each entry, but what of it? Modern text editors allow you to copy and paste text from and to a specific place with ease.

Existing microdata schema's are also inadequate for book lists. schema.org's Book class is ridiculous; the term "name" has a specific meaning in most book catalogues, and that meaning isn't the title of the book. Many of schema.org's properties are derived from other classes; only six properties in the Book class are specific to books. All too often, schema.org's properties are clumsily shoehorned into HTML elements. And schema.org's properties lack the granularity needed for bibliographic information.

The tbs has been designed from the ground up to incorporate HTML5 and my own microdata schema. Bbliographic information, markup, and microdata are inextricably combined into a unified whole. It works fine for book lists but is extensible to include the complexities of, say, Bowers. It is as flexible as one needs it to be. And importantly, it is simple. Zed Shaw once wrote "A love affair with complexity is a programming sickness"2. The tbs eschews that sickness.

The tbs consists of four classes: Book, Book Chapter, Periodical, Periodical Article. Each class has it's own properties, and each property has an expected type, or type for short. Most properties are embedded in a <span> element, but Book and Periodical titles are embedded in a <cite> element, and date properties are embedded in a <time> element. Below is a brief summation of the expected format of each class. Follow the class links for a complete description and detailed examples.


For more information follow links to classes.
Note that the entry headings are standard values for title attributes.


Author or Editor. Title. (Series Title). Contributor(s). Volumes. Edition. Publisher, Year Published. Format. Annotation.

Book Chapter

Chapter Author. "Chapter Title". Book Title. Editor. Book Publisher. Year Published. Start Page-End Page. Synopsis.


Periodical Title. Volume:Number. Issue Date.

Periodical Article

Article Author: "Article Title". Periodical Title, Volume:Number, Issue Date, pp. Start Page-End Page; Abstract.


1MLA handbook for writers of research papers. 7th edn. MLA, .

2Shaw, Zed. Learn C the hard way. Addison, .