The ASCL makes it easy to cite the software astro research depends on. Every astronomy journal and many others such as Science and Nature accept ASCL references; ADS shows citations to ASCL entries from nearly 90 journals. Citations to ASCL entries are tracked by ADS, Web of Science, and other indices.
Citations to ASCL entries from ADS as of 12/05/2018
ADS makes it easy to search for software in its holdings through the use of the “software” doctype.
ASCL has started tagging NASA software among its entries, allowing you to search ASCL and ADS for this software.
You can find the tags on an entry below the “Discuss” button.
Citation information and other statistics, such as the number of site links we most recently checked, when we checked them, and how many are healthy, appear on our dashboard, which is updated on Tuesdays and Fridays.
If you have any questions about citing ASCL entries, we’re happy to help! Email firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet to @asclnet.
The Astronomy Department at the University of Maryland (College Park) offers a one-credit astronomy scientific computing class, ASTR 288P: Introduction to Astronomical Programming, to provide undergraduates with a foundation in computing. This course is a prerequisite to an advanced-level three-credit course on Computational Astrophysics (ASTR 415).
In ASTR 288P, students learn to work with the UNIX terminal, get the basics of coding with Python and some C, and learn what makefiles are and how to install software, among other topics. The course also introduces students to the ASCL, as for the final class project, students (either alone or in pairs) pick a code from the ASCL, give a short presentation on how they installed and used it, and discuss how that code fits in the large scheme of computing in astrophysics. This allows the students to get a feel for the computational work the astro community is doing and is a good match to test the skills they should have learned in the class.
Until this week, a search in ADS for doctype:”software” keyword:”NASA” returned zero results. NASA has funded the ASCL to make its astronomy research software discoverable in ASCL and ADS. This required changes to the ASCL structure and the ADS data feed, and edits to some current records; it also entails mining various NASA software sites for codes that meet the ASCL’s criteria and creating appropriately tagged entries for them. In the first phase of the project, started in July, our wonderful developer Judy Schmidt (@SpaceGeck) worked her magic on our infrastructure, keywords have been added to some existing records, and ADS has ingested the first entries we’ve tagged with the NASA keyword. We can now see first results from this two-year project:
Additional changes will be coming to the ASCL in the coming months as we continue this funded work. We love this project; at its core, it’s a simple concept, and leverages existing resources (ADS, various NASA code sites, and ASCL) to make research software more discoverable and provides information about NASA software that was not readily available before. It furthers the excellent work NASA has been doing to release software, demonstrates yet another value of ADS (which has many superpowers!), and makes the ASCL more useful, too.