Navigation Links
Crowdsourcing science: Researcher uses Facebook to identify thousands of fish
Date:5/13/2011

Toronto, ON Facebook is well-known for connecting friends, publicizing events and allowing people ample space to procrastinate online.

But recently, a scientist at the University of Toronto Scarborough (UTSC) helped illuminate a powerful new use for the social networking tool.

In January, UTSC PhD candidate Devin Bloom helped conduct the first ichthyological survey on Guyana's remote Cuyuni River. Led by Oregon State University's Dr. Brian Sidlauskas, the goal was to find out which species of fish live in the Cuyuni and get a good estimate of their abundance.

During the survey, Bloom and the rest of the research team spent two weeks catching as many fish as they could. They even slept in makeshift jungle camps. But after collecting more than 5,000 specimens, the team had a big problem.

In order to get the fish out of the country, the research team need needed an accurate count of each species and provide a detailed report to the Guyanese government. Since the team had to return to North America as soon as possible, they had just a few days to identify thousands of fish specimens.

That's when Bloom, who isn't exactly the most tech-savvy guy out there, suggested Facebook. Sidlauskas loved the idea, so he uploaded photos of each species. And in less than 24 hours, their network of friendsmany of whom hold PhDs in ichthyology and are "diehard fish-heads"had identified almost every specimen. With 5,000 identifications in hand, the team was able to deliver their results to the government and return home on schedule.

The team's novel use of Facebook to accurately crowdsource scientific data could change the way academics view social networking. It has certainly led Bloom to change his mind about the value of online tools. "Social networking is so powerful," he says, "and scientists should be using it more to connect with the world-at-large."


'/>"/>

Contact: Karen Ho
karen.ho@utsc.utoronto.ca
416-208-5149
University of Toronto Scarborough
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1

Related biology news :

1. Crossing borders in language science: What bilinguals tell us about mind and brain
2. Citizen science: Birders contribute valuable data on invasive plant species
3. Down to Earth carbon science: Briefing April 15 in DC
4. BU researchers identify extensive methane leaks under streets of Boston
5. CAMH researcher discovers new gene that causes intellectual disability
6. UT Southwestern researchers find protein that might be key to cutting cancer cells blood supply
7. Striking the right balance: JBEI researchers counteract biofuel toxicity in microbes
8. Yale researchers explain why cancer smart drugs may not be so smart
9. Reforesting rural lands in China pays big dividends, Stanford researchers say
10. Chemistry researchers receive patent for new scientific measurement instrument
11. USDA researchers, collaborators sequence genomes of fungi that threaten wheat, poplars
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:1/25/2016)...   Unisys Corporation (NYSE: UIS ) today announced ... International Airport, New York City , to help ... to enter the United States using passports ... pilot testing of the system at Dulles last year. The ... during January 2016. --> pilot testing of the ...
(Date:1/21/2016)... , January 21, 2016 ... to a new market research report "Emotion Detection and ... Others), Software Tools (Facial Expression, Voice Recognition and ... - Global forecast to 2020", published by MarketsandMarkets, ... expected to reach USD 22.65 Billion by 2020, ...
(Date:1/18/2016)... Calif. , Jan. 18, 2016  Extenua ... software that simplifies the use and access of ... and go-to-market partnership with American Cyber.  ... brings extensive experience leading transformational C4ISR and Cyber ... and integrating the latest proven technology solutions," said ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/9/2016)... 9, 2016 BERG, a biopharmaceutical company ... approach, has announced the appointment of Jason ... Operating Officer. Haddock brings to BERG over 20 ... years in senior financial functions at pharmaceutical companies, ... organizational management. Niven R. Narain ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... , Feb. 8, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - BIOREM Inc. (TSXV: ... the top ten finalists for clean technology companies in the ... the top 10 companies listed on the TSX Venture Exchange, ... & gas, clean technology & life sciences, diversified ... equal weighting given to return on investment, market cap growth, ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... , Feb. 8, 2016  CytRx Corporation (NASDAQ: ... company specializing in oncology, today announced that it ... agreement with Hercules Technology Growth Capital, Inc. and ... million in financing. --> ... $25 million of financing under the loan and ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... , Feb. 8, 2016 Novan, Inc. today announced that ... the Board of Directors of Novan. In addition, Robert Keegan ... North Carolina . --> ... announced that it received a total of $32.8 million of net ... its private investor network originating throughout the Research Triangle area of ...
Breaking Biology Technology: