Defining Scholarly Ephemera

The IASGE project has been busy writing updates for our community, participating in webinars, and attending conferences. We have recently hit our six month mark on the project and have made some significant progress researching the ways in which source code produced by the scholarly community can be archived and preserved for future (re)use. In recent discussions about our project with colleagues, we have been careful to stress the importance of saving the contextual, scholarly ephemera associated with source code; not just the source code itself. But what exactly do we mean by "scholarly ephemera"? To answer this question, we wanted to take a minute to write out our definition, provide some explanations on why we are seeking to archive it as part of the scholarly record, and elaborate on why it is an important way to understand source code more fully.