Practices in Code Discoverability: Astrophysics Source Code Library

Alice Allen (Calverton, MD), Peter J. Teuben (University of Maryland)
Robert J. Nemiroff (Michigan Technological University)
Lior Shamir (Lawrence Technological University)


Here we describe the Astrophysics Source Code Library (ASCL), which takes an active approach to sharing astrophysical source code. ASCL’s editor seeks out both new and old peer-reviewed papers that describe methods or experiments that involve the development or use of source code, and adds entries for the found codes to the library. This approach ensures that source codes are added without requiring authors to actively submit them, resulting in a comprehensive listing that covers a significant number of the astrophysics source codes used in peer-reviewed studies. The ASCL now has nearly 300 codes in it and continues to grow.

In 2011, the ASCL ( has on average added 18 new codes per month. An advisory committee has been established to provide input and guide the development and expansion of the new site, and a marketing plan has been developed and is being executed. All ASCL source codes have been used to generate results published in or submitted to a refereed journal and are freely available either via a download site or from an identified source.

This presentation covers the history of the ASCL and other similar attempts. It examines the current state and benefits of the ASCL, the means of and requirements for including codes, and outlines its future plans.

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Paper ID: P003

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