Citizen Science in Oakland: By the People, for the People

By Guest | February 18, 2018 12:54 pm

By: Hope Henderson

Through the atrium of an Oakland, CA community center, and down a narrow, paint-spattered hallway, sits Counter Culture Labs (CCL). This bocce-ball-court-turned-research-laboratory has been the east bay home for citizen science and biohacking since 2012.

Ongoing projects at CCL include the Real Vegan Cheese project, which is programming yeast to produce milk proteins that can be turned into “real” cheese. Open Insulin aims to develop an open source protocol to produce a low-cost, generic version of insulin. In the Art-n-Science group, people make art by doing things like growing different colored bacteria in patterns to create petri dish paintings. Says CCL co-founder Patrik D’haeseleer: “We wouldn’t do it if it wasn’t fun.” Read More

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Citizen Science

Do Science With Your Loved Ones This Valentine’s Day!

By lshell | February 13, 2018 9:22 pm
ScienceConversationHeartTogether, you can participate in any of these projects centered around the heart, love and care.

Cheers!
The SciStarter Team

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Super Bowl Citizen Science Projects from the Science Cheerleaders!

By lshell | February 1, 2018 8:41 pm

 

When the Philadelphia Eagles face the New England Patriots on Sunday, look for the brains on the sidelines. A combined THIRTY Super Bowl cheerleaders are currently pursuing careers in STEM. Fifteen on the Patriots side and fifteen on the Eagles side. Below, two former cheerleaders share their picks for Citizen Science on Super Bowl Sunday!
Cheers!
The SciStarter Team

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Trophy marks new era for citizen science in the classroom

By Guest | January 24, 2018 4:29 pm

By Egle Marija Ramanauskaite, Citizen Science Coordinator at EyesOnALZ

December 21st, 2017, just might enter the history books as the first day a citizen science trophy was ever awarded to a school. The trophy, bestowed to 250 students for contributing to Alzheimer’s research, is now proudly displayed next to sports trophies & special achievement awards at a middle school in Boise, ID.

The world’s first citizen science trophy, awarded to Lake Hazel Middle School students in December 2017, prominently displayed in the school’s trophy case. The trophy was custom built at Technarium hackerspace and is open source. Photos by Vi.Zo, Human Computation Institute and Erin Davis, Lake Hazel Middle School (CC BY-NC SA 4.0).

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MORE ABOUT: Alzheimer's, STEM

You Can Do More to Combat the Flu than Just Get a Flu Shot

By Kristin Butler | January 18, 2018 10:38 am

If you feel like this year’s flu season is a rough one, that’s because it is.

CBS News recently reported that this year’s flu virus is dominated by a particularly nasty strain, H3N2, which has reached almost every corner of the country, causing prolonged illness in many and in some instances, death. The very young and the elderly are particularly vulnerable, and this year’s vaccine may only be about 30% effective because H3N2 tends to mutate quickly. Read More

SciStarter’s Top 10 Projects of 2017 are here!

By lshell | January 15, 2018 2:08 pm

 

What a year it has been! We now have more than 50,000 active members participating in over 1,700 projects on SciStarter. We can’t wait to see what 2018 brings.

From neurons to whales and everything in between, the 2017 Top 10 Projects are as varied and diverse as their participants. Thanks for making it such a successful year for citizen science.

This list, in no particular order, is based on the 10 projects with the most page views on SciStarter *and* the most “joins”.

Cheers!
The SciStarter Team

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Female Songbirds: The Latest Underrepresented Voices in Science

By Julia Travers | January 12, 2018 10:13 am
1_Picture1

Female Troupial, Photo Credit: Dr. Karan Odom

Songbirds may be nature’s pop stars, but the females are still waiting for a turn in the spotlight — we don’t even know if females sing in about 70 percent of songbird species. This is because the study of birds has a gender gap: most previous research has focused on male song. Participants in the Female Bird Song Project are looking to right this imbalance.

“I think this is a very important project. It involves citizen science in gathering fundamental information about the behavioral diversity of birds,” says evolutionary ornithologist Richard Prum of Yale University. Researchers from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Leiden University call on birders to contribute videos, photos, sound clips and field notes of female bird songs so they can better understand the evolution and role of this expressive behavior. Their research already revealed that female birds have most likely been singing for tens of millions of years. Read More

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Citizen Science, Living World

Seven citizen science projects to do in the snow!

By Darlene Cavalier | January 4, 2018 4:03 pm
Willy from Philly measures snow precipitation

Willy from Philly measures snow precipitation

Did you know that forecasters rely on YOU to help accurately predict storms, floods, droughts and extreme weather conditions? The National Weather Service, for example, depends on people just like you to report local rain and snow precipitation measurements to a citizen science project known as CoCoRaHS: Community Collaborative Rain, Hail, and Snow Network. Learn more about this long-running, popular project and, when you’re ready to jump in, set up your rain gauge before the next rain or snow storm to collect rain, record measurements, and share data! CoCoRaHS shares the data with scientists, planners, and, yes, the National Weather Service. CoCoRaHS is also a SciStarter Affiliate which means you can earn credit for participation in your SciStarter dashboard. OOOOOOH!

This is one is cool. Simply by Tweeting the precise snow accumulation data where you are, you can help cryosphere researchers calibrate the accuracy of instruments on-board weather satellites orbiting overhead! Those instruments are great at taking pictures and analyzing wide sections of land but they cannot tell the difference between, say, a snow bank and a huge accumulation of naturally falling snow. But you can! Get your ruler, put your warm winter gear on, and head outside to do SnowTweets! Tag @SciStarter and #SnowDay if you decide to do this one and we’ll give you a shout out!

Here are more projects on SciStarter that you can do in the snow!

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Citizen Science
MORE ABOUT: snow, snowday

Your Computer Can Volunteer, Too

By Guest | January 4, 2018 3:26 pm

By: Caitlin Larkin

You probably remember when the Ebola virus became news in 2014, after it killed thousands of people. Erica Ollmann Saphire (pictured above), a structural biologist at The Scripps Research Institute, and one of the world’s foremost experts on Ebola, understood the molecular structure of the disease—and she knew its weak spots. She had a plan of attack to find an antiviral drug. Her first step was to study millions of chemical compounds to determine their potential as the basis for this drug. Testing just one compound in a laboratory, however, could take years. Computer-based simulations would help reduce the time needed for this testing by predicting the lab outcomes, but Saphire didn’t have access to computers powerful enough to run these simulations. Read More

It’s time for winter solstice and lights!

By lshell | December 24, 2017 1:27 pm

 

 

By United States Air Force photo by Senior Airman Joshua Strang - This Image was released by the United States Air Force with the ID 050118-F-3488S-003 Auroroa Borealis over
USAF SrA Joshua Stran

We are finally at the tipping point, the daylight is getting a little longer with each waning night. We have a chance to look upwards and savor the night sky and tell scientists what we can see of it. For more ideas, be sure to check out the 12 Days of Christmas with Citizen Science!

Take a step outside to join others around the world with these citizen science projects!

Cheers!
The SciStarter Team

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