Yesterday was the Hack Day at the UK National Astronomy Meeting 2014 in Portsmouth. I organised it with my good friend Arfon Smith of GitHub, formerly Zooniverse. We wanted to try and start a new NAM tradition - it went well so maybe we did. I'm psyched that .Astronomy got to help make it happen... Continue Reading →
Today is the start of the UK National Meeting in Portsmouth. I’ll be there tomorrow, and running the NAM Hack Day on Wednesday with Arfon Smith - which is going to be awesome. Today at NAM, the nation's astronomers will discuss the case for UK involvement in the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope project - the LSST. The... Continue Reading →
Working at the Zooniverse means that I get to indulge many of my interests beyond astronomy, like history. In January we launched a project in partnership with the Imperial War Museum and the National Archives called Operation War Diary. It's a 'citizen history' site that asks the public to tag and transcribe more than one million war diaries, and other handwritten notes, produced on the... Continue Reading →
A new Milky Way Project paper was published to the arXiv last week. The paper presents Brut, an algorithm trained to identify bubbles in infrared images of the Galaxy. Brut uses the catalogue of bubbles identified by more 35,000 citizen scientists from the original Milky Way Project. These bubbles are used as a training set to allow... Continue Reading →
New Zooniverse project goes live today and I warn you: it is highly addictive!
A few months ago we quietly placed a new project online. Called Sunspotter, it was essentially a game of hot-or-not for sunspot data – and since there were not many images available at the time, we thought it best to just let it be used by the people who noticed it, or who had tried it during the beta test. The results have since been validated, and the site works! In fact there are even preliminary results, which is all very exciting. Loads of new images have now been prepared, so today Sunspotter gets its proper debut. Try it at www.sunspotter.org.
— Sunspotter (@sunspotter_org) June 13, 2014
On the site you are shown two images of sunspot groups and asked which is more complex. That might sound odd at first, but really it’s quite easy. The…
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I've added a new section to Orbiting Frog today: Orbiting Links (http://links.orbitingfrog.com). This new page displays an automated set of URLs currently being shared by the astronomers of Twitter. This is a work in progress, but it seems to be producing good results so far. Orbiting Links is created by taking a small set of my favourite astro-Tweeters, and following... Continue Reading →
TED 2014 has just ended here in Vancouver and I have finally now experienced an event I’ve heard a lot about for many years. I’ve watched TED talks online for as long as I’ve watched anything online and the real deal did not disappoint. Attending TED for the first time has been intense, wonderful, and... Continue Reading →
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DppJ-Sexmdg This was recorded at the Citizen Cyberscience Summit in London in February - it's me summarising the Zooniverse for anyone out there that might like to try out our own brand of Citizen Science.
I was lucky enough to visit Norway last week. I lead a group chasing the aurora (as best you can in cloud!) over the top of Norway from Tromsø to the Russian border - and back again. We were on a boat. Being that my favourite photographer was with me, we got some great shots... Continue Reading →
This video is a time-lapse of images taken from a geostationary satellite. It shows a whole year of the Earth's orbit around the Sun from 2010 to 2011. You can see the difference in illumination between the seasons created by the Earth's tilt; the angle of the line between light and dark changes as we... Continue Reading →