The project borns in 2017 at the Research laboratory on semantic, adaptive and social Web (SASWEB), a research center of the Department of Mathematics, Computer Science and Physics of University of Udine.

The idea behind VisualBib comes from the experience gained in a project for the catalogation of scientific production about zz-structures. A detailed bibliography has been collected and made accessible both through ordered lists and a visual representation called narrative view. This diagram allows users to visually access all metadata through a timeline that highlights the evolution of research over the past twenty years through publications and authors who have worked on. The diagram also allows to interactively highlight the authorial and citational ties of the various works.

Unfortunately this type of representation, while being effective, has been statically built from a selected set of papers and cannot be interactively expanded by the users.

We wanted to offer users a new tool for the automatic generation of narrative views of bibliographies to show the scientific production of one or more authors or on a specific topic. We have modelled and implemented, VisualBib, a Web app to allow the users to:

  • perform real-time queries on some index repositories of scientific literature such as Scopus, CrossRef and OpenCitations, in order to retrieve metadata, such as the list of articles of a given author, the editorial details, the list of the cited articles and the citations of a given article, etc.;
  • generate visual holistic representations of bibliographies in the form of narrative views which represent, in a time-based diagrams, the papers, the authors and the citation relationships;
  • explore the network of cited/citing references in order to opportunely expand the bibliography;
  • generate bibtex file of the current bibliography;
  • save the diagrams and share them by a simple web link, in a read-write or read-only mode.