Today, I bring you Project Puffin: The Infographic. Click to enlarge it. Check out the URL for the project as well!
Sometimes good things can come out of bad things. After the devastating earthquake that hit Japan in 2011, and which caused massive problems at Fukushima Diachi nuclear reactor (which are still ongoing, by the way), it became obvious that there was a need for reliable, up-to-date data on radiation hazards. A joint project of International Medcom, Keio University, The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and GlobalGiving has answered that need with Safecast.
Safecast bills itself as a “global sensor network for collecting and sharing radiation measurements to empower people with data about their environments.” Originally designed to focus on radiation levels in Japan, Safecast is now trying to get a radiation baseline for the planet as well as measure other environmental factors. There are about 50 volunteers on the radiation monitoring team.
Safecast’s current goal is to fundraise, and that’s how you can participate. The team wants to raise approximately $90,000 to produce more bGeigies, the devices they attach to cars to monitor radiation levels. There are several donation levels available, including a monthly donation option. You can send your donation via their GlobalGiving page.
It might be said that this is the age of data collection: nearly everything these days is being measured, quantified, and analyzed. No where is that more true than the human body.
uBiome is a project designed to create the world’s largest microbiome data set. To participate, you fund the project at the IndieGoGo site here, and receive a swab sampling kit. You’ll then swab several locations on your body (nose, mouth, ear, GI tract, and genitals) and return the kit to the project researchers.
DNA sequencing will be used to analyze your samples. You will get a link to view your own personal profile, and there you’ll be able to see what your microbiome is. You’ll have access to personal analysis tools and data viewers so that you can anonymously compare your own data to crowd data as well as with the latest scientific research.
The human microbiome is thought to have major correlations with human health. Microbes perform essential functions such as digesting food and microbial activity might influence mammalian mood and behavior. The microbiome may well influence conditions like autism, depression, anxiety, gut disorders, eczema, and chronic sinusitis.
Crowdfunding is all the rage these days, and with good reason: it allows people to directly fund projects that they care about. The latest entry in the science crowdfunding arena is Microryza.
This website suggests that the average researcher spends 12 weeks a year writing grants, and that 80% of these applications are rejected.That’s a lot of time spent… not doing science.
When you donate to at Microryza, you receive updates directly from the researchers to see how they work and see how your donation helped. Current projects open for donations include a student-designed and built electric race car, a Magellanic penguin tracking initiative, and a project designed to eradicate human intestinal hookworms.
For additional crowdfunding sites, have a look at this list.