Mission and Scope of Software Submissions
Aperture recognizes the essential importance of software to the advancement of science, especially in neuroimaging research. When submitting Software Research Objects to Aperture, authors are welcome and encouraged to think broadly beyond the traditional PDF of “Software” and “Toolbox” papers.
As for any Aperture Research Objects, software submissions will be selected and reviewed based on their quality, impact, relevance, and their ability to increase connectivity among researchers in the field. The software should fall within the interest of the OHBM mission to advance the understanding of the anatomical and functional organization of the human brain with a strong focus on neuroimaging. Research Objects involving animal studies are also welcome.
Submissions that report minor plug-ins for existing software or minor advancements of existing algorithms with limited breadth or impact are unlikely to be selected for peer review. However, submissions representing important changes (even if small) in a previous toolbox/library, but with great impact and utility, are very much welcome.
Almost every active researcher in the field of neuroimaging develops software in one way or another, and many research labs have their specialized in-house software. Aperture aims to publish code that is likely to have a broader utility (beyond one’s own lab). Due to the extensive workload for reviewers to assess code, not every submission may make it to peer review unless it is deemed to be of broader utility to the community.
Types of Software Submissions
Types of code submissions can be, but are not limited to the categories below:
Software and toolboxes: Authors can submit stand-alone software packages and toolboxes for neuroimaging analyses.
Notebooks and pipelines: Authors can submit Notebooks (E.g., Jupyter, R) and scripts (e.g. Python, Matlab/Octave markup code). While Aperture would prefer open source software (i.e., Python, Octave), Matlab is welcome too (as it can be widely distributed and can be compiled). The editorial team will consider submissions of non-open software on a case by case basis.
Notebooks can be educational in nature, they can contain pedagogical tutorials, they can reveal insights into specific analysis steps, and/or they can be entire processing pipelines. Submissions should include as much supporting information as possible. Documentation should be included within the notebook/mockup file.
Apps and Web tools: Submissions can be smartphone apps for Android/iPhones and/or cloud-based or browser-based software. Such apps could, for example, serve an educational purpose regarding neuroimaging data acquisition, data reconstruction, brain science, or other topics.
Brain imaging data acquisition and reconstruction code: Submissions can be open code related to MRI sequences, MR-signal simulation, and/or MRI image reconstruction (or other brain imaging modalities). Non-open sequence code that is confined to the programming environment of commercial vendors does not fall within the scope of Aperture’s code submissions.
Requirements of Software Submissions
Authors are encouraged to submit software that is open-source and accessible via a trusted repository. Please link to this repository using the “Research Object Types” Form in the “Forms” tab on the Submission Platform. While any software that may have significant impact on the field may be submitted, Aperture encourages authors to submit software that fulfills the following criteria. Deviations from these criteria should be explained in the cover letter.