Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) are one of the building blocks of academic bibliography systems. It's now possible to get a DOI for a GitHub repository (or more accurately, for the state of a GitHub repository at a particular point in time). We are going to use this to publish a citable version of our core lessons.
- We have now created a milestone called "Version 5.3" in each of our core lessons' repositories.
- The maintainers for those lessons will be adding some outstanding issues and pull requests to those milestones to show what's going to be tidied up for the published version, and what's going to be deferred until later.
- Once those issues are tidied up, we will tag the repositories and generate DOIs so that people can cite our lessons more easily.
As far as we know, this is the first time a group of people have built lessons on GitHub and then published them in a way that traditional academic systems recognize. (If others have done this before, we'd be grateful for pointers and advice.) Our target date for release is Thursday, May 14. To help us get there, participants in the current round of instructor training are being asked to proof-read the lessons and submit small fixes—see this post on the training course blog for details. If you have a bit of time to look things over, we'd be grateful for your comments as well.
This post originally appeared in the Software Carpentry blog.