One goal of citizen science is to encourage dissemination of citizen-made observations and knowledge gained about the interactions between the human-made and natural environments—even if that knowledge makes us uncomfortable in confronting  potentially damaging cultural traditions. Here we see something as seemingly innocent as a celebratory balloon release can have disastrous consequences. — LFF — Excerpt:…

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“There’s no plan(et) B” we saw on many of the recent signs on Earth Day marches; however there may be a Planet Nine! Thanks to tens of thousands of citizen scientists who logged four years worth of effort in just three days, there are now four Planet Nine candidates for follow-up. That’s real people-powered research….

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Excerpt: For the second year in a row, Oklahoma University (OU) researchers will employ residents from around Oklahoma to collect data for the state’s first major study on amphibian pathogens. The lab, which is run by Cameron Siler, assistant curator of herpetology for the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History, is part of the…

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Excerpt: A dozen MIT students and community members clamber into a van on a bright morning in late January. There’s palpable excitement as the van drives down Main Street in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and crosses onto Portland Street. The chilly weather and light snow does nothing to dampen the group’s spirits. They’re on a hunt —…

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Excerpt: I’ve encountered citizen-scientist bankers who turned from climate change skeptics into sustainability advocates, neighbors who sent an industry manager to jail for polluting their air, a community that accepted the weighty responsibility of managing federally designated threatened sea turtles, and online gamers who became ambassadors for science. These amateurs absorb the scientific method, and…

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Matching the right tool with a compelling narrative. For David Lang, this was the ah-ha moment at OpenROV’s inception. “Tool plus narrative” provides an interesting lens to examine citizen science and, perhaps, a useful recipe for the development of new citizen science projects. A narrative is a way of embedding a research question within the…

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Excerpt: A year ago, University of Alabama professor Sarah Parcak won a $1 million TED Prize for her work in “space archaeology” — using satellite imagery beamed down from space to search for archaeological sites lost through time. Today, Parcak launches GlobalXplorer, a citizen science platform that encourages people around the world to identify and…

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Excerpt: EVE Online players will help scientists look for other planets from the comfort of their computer desks later this year. The game’s developer, CCP Games, is teaming up with Massively Multiplayer Online Science (MMOS), the University of Reykjavik and the University of Geneva to crowdsource space exploration within EVE’s virtual universe. Players will hunt…

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Excerpt: Thin, blade-like walls, some as tall as a 16-story building, dominate a previously undocumented network of intersecting ridges on Mars, found in images from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. The simplest explanation for these impressive ridges is that lava flowed into pre-existing fractures in the ground and later resisted erosion better than material around them….

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