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Space Science

Identify Galaxies Using Spare Wetware Cycles 136

hazem invites us to have fun, learn about galaxies, and actually help astronomers by looking at pictures of galaxies and identifying the type. Warning: it's more addictive than Tetris. From the site: "GalaxyZoo... harnesses the power of the internet — and your brain — to classify a million galaxies. By taking part, you'll not only be contributing to scientific research, but you'll view parts of the Universe that literally no-one has ever seen before and get a sense of the glorious diversity of galaxies that pepper the sky. Why do we need you? The simple answer is that the human brain is much better at recognizing patterns than a computer can ever be. Any computer program we write to sort our galaxies into categories would do a reasonable job, but it would also inevitably throw out the unusual, the weird and the wonderful. To rescue these interesting systems which have a story to tell, we need you."
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Identify Galaxies Using Spare Wetware Cycles

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  • Stardust @ Home (Score:3, Informative)

    by Animaether ( 411575 ) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @05:56PM (#19862177) Journal
    Reminds me of Stardust@Home ( 1/069248 [] / [] )

    Funny how human eyes are still needed for these tasks
  • Re:Alternatively (Score:5, Informative)

    by Animaether ( 411575 ) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @06:06PM (#19862243) Journal
    The problem is that computer programs can easily mis-identify things. You should try going over a few of the galaxies they present.. not the tutorial ones.. those are easy.. the actual ones. They're mostly extremely vague, low-res, pixelated jpeg-style-artifacty blobs. In fact, on most of them, I'm having to click "don't know", but on some of them, very vaguely, I can see a spiral.. but to a computer program - that would still be a blob. On the opposite end.. what we clearly identify as a merger, a computer program might think it to be a funky spiral.

    That said.. as I mentioned.. most of the actual images are pretty much unidentifiable.. it would be nice if they would concentrate on getting higher resolution images first.. it would make identification easier and more robust.
    I understand that maybe they can't.. but a database full of "don't know"-unrecognizable blobs.. I'm not sure what the value is.

"So why don't you make like a tree, and get outta here." -- Biff in "Back to the Future"