ASCL editors were busy this week! We added 28 new entries, edited 19, and 5 entries were added to our staging area. Notifications were sent to 34 authors and 13 social media posts were scheduled. Forty codes were added in June, more than in any other month except one, and the June additions post has been written and will appear on Wednesday
A mixed week, with a little of many usual tasks. Seven new entries were put into production; some of these were submitted by authors, and the rest were codes found by editors as part of our usual perusals of astro literature. We search for the software that enables research so you don’t have to! Four staged entries were created and eight entries curated. We also added an article (Toward Long-Term and Archivable Reproducibility) to one of our Resources pages, and had some correspondence — answering questions, exchanging ideas about the ASCL, and discussing recent articles, including the one added to Resources — that is typical for an average week.
Did you notice the link to the ASCL on the June 22 Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD) page? It appears at the bottom of the page, just above the link for Tomorrow’s picture.
APOD links to the ASCL periodically. The tie between these two resources is Robert Nemiroff, who co-created APOD with Jerry Bonnell, and co-created the ASCL with John Wallin. This past week, APOD also carried links for the Random APOD Generator that Judy Schmidt wrote, and links to APOD sites in many world languages. Want to know more about APOD? You’re in luck! Nemiroff was a guest on a recent Space Junk podcast, talking about Faster Than Light Phenomena and the Story of APOD; give it a listen!
A busy week! We added four entries to our staging area, curated eighteen entries, finished the correspondence for last month’s additions, and staged thirteen random code posts for our social media sites. This latter task took a ridiculous amount of time this week, as I ran into several entries with issues. The issues that often take the longest to solve are site links that work but no longer go to code sites, or that go to pages that describe code, but have bad links for downloading the software. And this is why “today’s random code” is such an important part of our curation work! We run link checkers (two different ones) regularly, but they don’t catch instances where the link works, but the website has changed and no longer has code information on it.
Some of the curation this past week was through our query program, as described in a previous post. As we showed in our April 10 weekly post, at that time 117 entries had not been curated since the beginning of 2018; we’re now down to 59 entries to look at by the end of this year.
The monthly SciCodes meetings were this past week (one early, one late). The group has selected top priorities out of many possible tasks for collaboration and decided on basic governance. We use these meetings to share our work through monthly presentations, and we now have talks scheduled through the end of the year, except for August! August stands alone.
Awarded for the first time in 2020, the Astronomical Data Analysis Software and Systems (ADASS) Prize for an Outstanding Contribution to Astronomical Software is awarded every year at the annual conference. Eligible candidates are the developers of astronomical software ranging from those that have stood the test of time to those that are new and cutting edge. Depending on the software and the nomination, the award is given to either a group or an individual. Nominations can be for a single program, a package, or a library.
Nominations for this year’s ADASS Software Prize are due by midnight UTC on
June 15th June 18. After that date, the Program Organizing Committee (POC) will review the nominations and descriptions and determine the winner. The winning software author, or a representative of the winning team, will be invited to give a talk at ADASS this year, have their ADASS conference fee waived, and receive a plaque.
A mix of usual work on the ASCL this week, with two author-submitted codes assigned ASCL IDs and one new code entry added, three staged entries added, and twenty entries curated. We also released the list of codes added in May and sent emails out to nearly all authors with codes added in May; we still have a few emails to go. A surprising number of authors wrote back with kind words, which ASCL editors really appreciate! (Thank you!) A couple of these authors also added license and/or citation information to their repos, as we suggest in our notification messages. (Yay! Kudos to them!) We also scheduled eight random daily code posts (for Facebook and Twitter). A few members of the Advisory Committee (AC) met this week to discuss how to fill an upcoming open seat on the committee, and a later discussion floated the idea of making this an open call for nominations by the community, with self-nominations welcome and encouraged. I like this idea and will bring it up with the whole AC this week.
I did not get any writing done; I did talk about writing, however, with a colleague who has already outlined a paper to which I will be contributing. In SciCodes work, we have a schedule for presentations, thanks to Tom Morrell and members of SciCodes who have volunteered to present or find presentations. And I did make it back to my office at UMD. It apparently takes a pandemic to make me clean (and dust) my desk, or maybe it was the need to set up a new monitor. In any case, it is lovely to be back!
A productive week, with nineteen code entries added, nineteen existing entries curated, and three entries staged. We also had some activity on Advisory Committee work and planning future presentations for the SciCodes Consortium. This coming week, I plan to work on papers, my own and also a collaborative effort, and ASCL editors will likely send out publication notices to authors whose codes were added in May. And I hope to finally return to working in my office at UMD; I’ve missed being on campus and seeing colleagues.
It sometimes surprises me how much work there is around the ASCL rather than on it. Back in 2010 when I started working on this resource, pretty much all I did was add code entries, one after another, every evening after work and on weekends. (At least it seemed that way.) Now, a lot of the work I do is related to the ASCL, as it’s on software issues (discoverability, citation, metadata, and so on) and other tasks such as coordinating and participating in meetings, but not actually on the ASCL itself.
So it was this past week. Since the previous week had both ASCL Advisory Committee (AC) and Scicodes meetings and this past week had a FORCE11 Software Citation Implementation CodeMeta Task Force meeting, this week involved work related to these three meetings. For example, Daniel Garijo, Hervé Menager, Lorraine Hwang, and I wrote and submitted an abstract for the PeerJ Computer Science call for papers for a special issue on software citation, indexing, and discoverability, determined how we would work together, and set up our online space for this work. Now all we have to do is write the paper! Daniel, Hervé, and Lorraine are leading this effort, though I will help out, as will others. I also met with a few AC members to talk more about our strategic plans.
Still, ten existing entries were curated, mostly through determining daily random code social media posts for the first week of June, which will be staged later this weekend, and a few through our regular examination of entries. Two author-submitted codes were assigned ASCL IDs along with one other code, and three entries were added to our staging area. This weekend, I’ll be processing staged entries to get them into production, and also will be adding that lovely find of a few weeks ago, the PFITS code from 1990.
Last week, it was all nearly the “usual ongoing tasks.” This past week, it was not. Sure, we curated ten records, added three to our staging area, and corresponded with a few authors about site links that were not working, and there was some writing, too, but most of this week’s work was to prep for and hold meetings, the first with all ASCL editors and Advisory Committee members, and the second for the SciCodes coalition. Because of differing time zones, each of these meetings involved two Zoom sessions, one early and one late. Though the need to accommodate different time zones is the reason for holding early and late sessions for the meeting, this also gets more work done, as the different sessions end up focusing on different topics and/or the second session advancing work done in the earlier one.
The Advisory Committee meetings were part of a continuing conversation about the ASCL’s strategic plan and looking ahead to the next five years. We want to make some changes and want to be thoughtful about them. We would like to hear from our users, too, on what they’d like the ASCL to be doing and working on. How can we best engage them? That is an important element of our planning going forward. If you have ideas on this, please let us know (firstname.lastname@example.org or comment below); we are eager to hear your thoughts!