Business, Government & Academia
The Pavilion Lake Research Project Science Team has reached its data collection milestones for the MAPPER project. In total, thousands of participants from around the globe analyzed over 1.1 million images, classified nearly 1.5 million features, submitted over 11 thousand text annotations and contributed over 2 thousand person-hours of hard work. This response has been truly amazing, and a thank-you message from the Science Team can be found at MAPPER.
Researchers at the University of Delaware have teamed up with Modern Science to invite the public to take part in assessing the mid-Atlantic scallop fishery. By analyzing imagery of the ocean floor gathered by Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs), the public will play a role in ocean conservation by helping organizations such as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) make better decisions about how to manage the scallop fishery now and for future generations. The project also includes information about scallop biology, how the fishery is managed, how AUVs work and where they're used. See Subsea Observers for more information.
January 2012 » New initiative to help researchers team up with the general public to take on big challenges together
Rask Systems has launched a new company called Modern Science to address the specific challenges of engaging the general public in real scientific research online. Setting up rock-solid, engaging and productive web applications can be a challenge for those unaccustomed to taking on such projects, and Modern Science seeks to address these issues on behalf of researchers by leveraging its experience building web applications for academia and government. Modern Science takes care of all the behind-the-scenes heavy lifting, freeing up researchers to focus on doing science.
MAPPER, the citizen science initiative developed by Rask Systems for NASA's Pavilion Lake Research Project has received a significant amount of attention over the past few weeks. MAPPER has been featured on NASA's Exploration web site here and here, and participation has been phenomenal. Thousands of people from all across North and South America, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia are contributing tens of thousands of observations every day to NASA through MAPPER.
MAPPER has also been featured on Gizmodo, Scientific American, Reddit, MSNBC, PC Gamer, Universe Today, Mars Daily, Kurzweil AI, Physorg and major international technology sites such as techtudo among many others. If you'd like to find out more about MAPPER, you can try it out here for yourself, or visit the Facebook page.
Rask Systems has been invited to return to the PLRP for a third year to provide SCUBA diving support, in addition to data collection management under contract with the University of British Columbia. The PLRP is an international, multi-disciplinary, science and exploration effort to explain the origin of freshwater microbialites in Pavilion Lake, British Columbia, Canada, and is supported by NASA and the Canadian Space Agency. More information about the PLRP can be found at www.pavilionlake.com.
Based on the success of 2009's field trials, Rask's MAPPER photo classification software has been enhanced to support contributions from the general public. Now, anyone who's interested in extreme environments, space exploration or the activities of the Pavilion Lake Research Project can sign-up to become a PLRP Remote Science Team Member at www.getmapper.com.
The Canadian Space Agency has contracted Rask Systems to develop a database of Space Medicine research and development activities taking place around the world. The database will serve as a comprehensive repository of activities, researchers, publications, technologies, facilities and field sites related to all aspects of Space Medicine.
Based on experience gained during 2009's Pavilion Lake Research Project field season, Rask has developed software to streamline the process of classifying photography of various features found on the bottom of Pavilion Lake. Building on the existing lake feature lexicon and classification process developed by PLRP scientists, Rask's Morphology Analysis Project for Participatory Exploration and Research (MAPPER) software manages and decentralizes the classification process, allowing many individuals to classify photography simultaneously. 2009 will be the first field trial of this software.
Rask Systems has been invited to return to the Pavilion Lake Research Project for 2010, providing support for in-water operations and to support data collection for the University of British Columbia's MARSLIFE project.
Rask Systems has been contracted by the University of British Columbia to provide assistance with developing and managing project deliverables for its Canadian Space Agency-funded MARSLIFE Analogue Missions contract. Rask's background in logistics management and experience with the CSA's exploration research program will inform the structure and content of contract deliverables to ensure that UBC's obligations are met while satisfying the CSA's expectations for this program. The MARSLIFE program is an operations-oriented investigation into the research that's conducted at the Pavilion Lake Research Project.
Rask Systems has been invited to participate in the Pavilion Lake Research Project (PLRP) 2009 field season, to assist with data management workflow and sub deployment/retrieval operations. The PLRP is an international, multi-disciplinary, science and exploration effort to explain the origin of freshwater microbialites in Pavilion Lake, British Columbia, Canada, and is supported by NASA and the Canadian Space Agency. More information about the PLRP can be found at www.pavilionlake.com.
The Canadian Space Agency has contracted Rask Systems to develop an internal, web-based application to facilitate the management of their Canadian Analogue Research Network (CARN) funding program. The application will help program managers track the progress, funding levels, and results of a portfolio of international research activities, in addition to serving as an easily searchable information repository for other departments within the agency.
The Canadian Space Agency has contracted Rask Systems to conduct a thorough logistics assessment of the Eureka Weather Station, a research base located in the Canadian Arctic on Ellesmere Island. Due to its size, potential on-site resources, proximity to areas of scientific interest, and well-established logistics chain, the CSA is interested in Eureka as a potential base of operations for hosting future planetary exploration research activities. Rask has been contracted by the CSA to evaluate all logistical aspects of the base and surrounding region from the perspective of their terrestrial exploration program to determine how this site and its existing partnerships and infrastructure may fit with the agency's research goals.