Poster Open Access

Little Minions in Archaeology An open space for RSE software and small scripts in digital archaeology

Florian Thiery; Ronald Visser; Moritz Mennenga

In our daily work, small self-made scripts, home-grown small applications and small hardware devices significantly help us to get work done. These little helpers - “little minions” - often reduce our workload or optimise our workflows, although they are not often presented to the outside world and the research community. Instead, we generally focus on presenting the results of our research and silently use our small tools to generate these, without not even pointing to them, especially to the source code or building instructions. In archaeology, research software is underrepresented in conference talks as well as in research publications. We have to promote these little minions in the RSE community and make them visible. That is why we created a Working Group for Little Minions at the CAA ( conference for digital archaeological research and created a session that focus on these “little minions” and invite researchers to share their little helpers, so that the scientific community may benefit and - perhaps - create spontaneously special minion interest groups. In such a minion session we are focussing on lightning talks - aka “minion talks” - where a wide range of tools are shared. Each “minion talk” explains the innovative character and mode of operation of the digital tool. Open Science is the aim of the little minions. Therefore, our aim is that all minions are non-proprietary, open and freely available (e.g. GitHub, GitLab, etc.). The last are not obligatory and tools that are not (yet) available can also be accepted.A constantly expanding list of little minions can be found at In this poster we will present our concept to promote research software at scientific conferences and share our experience on the idea.

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