I wanted to use a shortcode to put the_views() right where I want it. Calling the_views() does an echo instead of a return. So I looked to see if there was a get_the_views() function. There isn't.
But looking at the code, you can get the "return" version by setting the first argument to false. i.e.
Suggestion: put this on the Installation or FAQ page to make it easier for the next guy...