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Galaxy Zoo website review

Module by: Bridget Nash. E-mail the author

Summary: A summary of the Galaxy Zoo website.

Galaxy Zoo

Figure 1
Figure 1 (graphics1.png)
http://www.galaxyzoo.org/

  • You help astronomers explore the universe
  • To understand how these galaxies and our own formed, they need our help to classify them according to their shapes — a task at which our brain is better than even the most advanced computer
  • This is known as “citizen cyberscience”

About the website

  • More than 250,000 people have taken part in Galaxy Zoo so far, producing a wealth of valuable data and sending telescopes on Earth and in space chasing after their discoveries
  • When classifying you will be shown an image of a galaxy and be asked a series of questions about it. All you need to do is to look for features that mark out different types of galaxy and answer the questions as well as you can
  • This is a job that humans are much better at than computers, so most of the questions are fairly easy
  • There is a tutorial here: http://www.galaxyzoo.org/how_to_ take_part

What is citizen cyberscience?

  • Citizen cyberscience enables ordinary citizens to participate in real scientific research online
  • Almost anyone with an Internet connection can join: schoolchildren, office workers, pensioners
  • Using PCs, laptops and even mobile phones, volunteers can classify images of distant galaxies or track the migration patterns of endangered species, to name just two examples
  • Citizen cyberscience is social networking with a purpose. It turns science education into a highly motivating participative activity http://www.shuttleworthfoundation.org/fellows/francois-grey/
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Definition of a lens

Lenses

A lens is a custom view of the content in the repository. You can think of it as a fancy kind of list that will let you see content through the eyes of organizations and people you trust.

What is in a lens?

Lens makers point to materials (modules and collections), creating a guide that includes their own comments and descriptive tags about the content.

Who can create a lens?

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What are tags? tag icon

Tags are descriptors added by lens makers to help label content, attaching a vocabulary that is meaningful in the context of the lens.

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