In a previous post, I made some predictions about the future of citizen science. One of the things I said I was most excited about was the potential for mobile to really tap into the potential for the movement.
I believe we’re starting to see that now. This week’s post is about a tool called SENSR, which allows anyone to quickly and easily start a citizen science project. I’ve covered a few roll your own toolkits before, but this one is specifically geared toward grassroots movements, and is designed to use mobile platforms. The project is backed by a team at Carnegie Mellon University.
“If you are running a grassroots project for science, education, environmental conservation, community monitoring, or other reason, and are seeking ways to expand citizen scientists’ participation in contributing data, SENR can help you create a mobile data collection tool for your project,” say organizers.
Creating a project couldn’t be simpler. To get started, all you need is:
- A brief description about the project,
- a 114X114 image to use as an icon of the project and,
- a 650X300 image to use as a main image of the project.
“Our system not only helps you build the data collection tool, but also distribute your campaigns and activities to the world. People who download and use the SENSR iPhone application will see them on their devices, and it is easy as just clicking one button to participate in your activity. A small amount of time and effort of individuals in helping collect data will change the world.”
If starting a project is not your thing, there’s still plenty of ways to get involved. The site lists more than 25 projects that you can participate in, simply by downloading the SENSR app and joining a project. For example, there’s a woolly bear caterpillar project, and another one dedicated to tracking amphibians in St. Louis.
Image credit: SENSR website.