Zoo hysteria

May 11, 2010

Citizen Science is taking over the world. Galaxy Zoo has been a huge popular success, and seems to have done a modicum of science as well. Then it became Zooniverse and split into Galaxy Zoo Hubble, Galaxy Zoo Mergers, and Galaxy Zoo Supernovae. Next up was  Solar Stormwatch, where the citizen can help to keep the world safe from solar storms.

And now – taran tara – we have Moon Zoo.  Therein the citizen scientist will find lotsa pictures by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, and the opportunity to label all the craters. Well this does look like a fun game, but I was surprised to find this claimed as something humans can do better than computers. Doesn’t sound too tricky. We are not talking about classification. We are talking about plonking down a cross and expanding a circle to fit the size. I expect I am missing something. But anyhoo, it will be interesting to see if this is as popular as classifying galaxies.

What about getting Joe Public to classify organisms ? You know, a kind of Zoo Zoo ? Or maybe the contents of dessicated faeces from neolitihic villages ? Poo Zoo ?