SPOTTERON Citizen Science Blog

Monday, 09 December 2019

Science Meets Art - An Interview with Max Helmberger

At SPOTTERON, we love it when science, design and art come together to create something quite special and unique. One of those special things are the clay animation videos by Max Helmberger.

Max is a PhD student in Matthew Grieshop's lab currently researching soil ecology, or, to be more specific, microplastics in soil. He is a master in entomology, and, in addition, he is also a talented artist creating clay animation videos.
We asked Max a few questions about him and his work.

Tuesday, 05 November 2019

Desktop vs. Mobile - What's best for Citizen Science Projects?

An analysis of the state of the mobile web conducted by SimilarWeb earlier this year presented on Perficient Digital digital marketing agency has shown that usage of the mobile internet vs the desktop went down compared to 2017 but is still higher than in 2016.

Monday, 28 October 2019

Introducing the Citizen Science Apps: Mushroom Finder

It’s mushroom season here in Austria, which means it’s the perfect time to introduce you to the Mushroom Finder- the SPOTTERON mushroop app for citizen scientist! 

The Pilzfinder (mushroom finder) is our Citizen Science Web App created in cooperation with the Mycology Research Society of the University of Vienna. The idea behind it on the one hand is to preserve and expand the very old knowledge about wild growing mushrooms and toadstools and, above all, to introduce the topic to and engage the younger generation.

Thursday, 17 October 2019

Introducing the apps: The Tea Bag Index

In this blog series, we would like to introduce all our apps and give you an overview of the diverse world of Citizen Science and its possibilities.

In the Tea Bag Index Citizen Science App, everything is about soil. Various observation categories are ready to participate in, from easy soil classification and testing to the well-known method of burying and weighting teabags to measure the decay rate of plants. Citizen Scientists are welcome to participate worldwide and contribute to improving climate models and soil research.

Monday, 14 October 2019

Introducing the Citizen Science Apps: SpiderSpotter

In this blog series we would like to introduce all our apps and give you an overview of the diverse world of Citizen Science and its possibilities.
The SpiderSpotter App was created in cooperation with the University of Ghent, and will be enjoyed by all spider lovers!

Wednesday, 09 October 2019

Upcoming app feature: Citizen Science Events

A brand new feature for all Citizen Science apps on the SPOTTERON platform comes with the next release version: Citizen Science Events. With this new extension, the project teams can publish events like workshops or field trips directly in the Citizen Science app. Secondly, it is possible to create area events, to e.g. highlight, where more observations by the Citizen Scientists are needed.

Tuesday, 08 October 2019

Introducing the Citizen Science Apps: RoadKill

In this blog series we would like to introduce all our apps and give you an overview of the diverse world of Citizen Science and its possibilities.

Today's App: Roadkill

Monday, 23 September 2019

EXPLORE CITIZEN SCIENCE - a co-created video clip for free use

During the iDiv Summer School 2019 "Citizen Science – Innovation in Open Science, Society, and Policy" in Leipzig, Germany, we co-created the concept for a free Citizen Science video called "Explore Citizen Science", which you can download and use freely.

Tuesday, 17 September 2019

Introducing the Citizen Science Apps: Crowdwater

CrowdWater is a global Citizen Science project initiated by the University of Zurich, which collects hydrological data. The goal is to develop a cheap and easy data collection method that can be used to predict floods and low flow. The long-term aim of the project is to complement existing gauging station networks, especially in regions with a sparse measurement network, such as in developing countries.

Wednesday, 11 September 2019

The NestCams Project has officially launched!

We are very proud to announce that the NestCams project has now officially launched!
NestCams is a Citizen Science Project developed with our partners at the Core Facility Konrad Lorenz Research Station for Behavior and Cognition (Konrad Lorenz Forschungsstelle) on the Zooniverse platform.

Wednesday, 04 September 2019

New Citizen Science WhatsApp Group online

Inspired by the iDiv Summer School 2019, we have created a new public WhatsApp group to serve as a direct communication channel for all members, stakeholders, and academics in Citizen Science.

Tuesday, 03 September 2019

Schweiz Forscht portray some of their most dedicated citizen scientist!

In a new video series, our partners from Schweiz Forscht portray some of their most dedicated Citizen Scientist on their website.

Sunday, 01 September 2019

Citizen Science on tour: conferences, kids university and the iDiv summer school 2019

During summer, many conferences on Citizen Science and other events are happening. To spread the word about Citizen Science and share our experience in creating interactive Citizen Science apps, we had quite a schedule this year..

Wednesday, 28 August 2019

Introducing the Citizen Science Apps: Nature's Calender ZAMG

In this blog series we would like to introduce all our apps and give you an overview of the diverse world of Citizen Science and its possibilities. Our first one is the "Naturkalender" (Nature's Calender).

Tuesday, 20 August 2019

Open Call at the ACTION project!

The ACTION project (Participatory science toolkit against pollution, co-funded by the European Commission under the Horizon 2020 framework, SwafS programme ) has an open call for ongoing citizen science projects related to any form of pollution in Europe or worldwide looking for support.

Wednesday, 14 August 2019

Winners of Citizen Science Project Landauf, LandApp photo contest announced!

This spring, the Landesarchiv Baden-Württemberg, Germany, organized a photo contest through our Citizen Science App "Landauf, LandApp". Users were encouraged to go on a historical expedition and find out how the cities and their surroundings have changed in the last few decades.

Saturday, 29 June 2019

Impressions from Obergurgl | before the OECSK2019

Last week, the Austrian Citizen Science conference took place in Obergurgl, Tyrolia and we took the occasion to arrive one day earlier to visit the mountainside and get a good view of the impressive landscape surrounding the area.As Citizen Scientists, we always love to stumble apon new things to record and contribute in various scientific projects.

Wednesday, 05 June 2019

Citizen Science App Release: Tea Bag Index on SPOTTERON

A warm welcome to the new released Tea Bag Index Citizen Science app, now running on the SPOTTERON platform! We are especially happy to have this well known Citizen Science research project about soil and the global carbon cycle joining our CitSci network of projects by partner across Europe and beyond.The first spots by schools have already been contributed and the the first teabags have been burried to observe the decay rate of plant material on the locations.

Monday, 29 April 2019

Citizen Science Data Statistics: a new SPOTTERON app feature for realtime data visualization

The new SPOTTERON version 2.7 does not only introduce the new Leaderboards (aka User Ranking) for all Citizen Science apps running on the platform, but also 2 more panels with new data statistics.

Tuesday, 23 April 2019

Virtual Staff Gauges for Crowd-Based Stream Level Observations

We are proud to announce, that lately, we formed part of the author-team of a scientific paper, published in the Frontiers magazine, about Citizen Science based on hydrological observations.

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

User Ranking 2.0: Community Leaderboards in Citizen Science Apps

The new platform version 2.7. is going to bring a complete overhaul of the ranking panel with advanced community leaderboards and more statistic tool for all Citizen Science apps on the SPOTTERON platform.

Monday, 15 April 2019

Citizen Science Interview I - Johannes Frauscher, Global 2000

Today marks the release day for our Citizen Science interview series! Continuously we are going to publish interviews with different head of projects running on the SPOTTERON Platform.

Wednesday, 03 April 2019

Multilingualism in Citizen Science Projects

When developing Citizen Science Apps, the usability has a big impact on how well and frequent people use them in the end. The goal for Citizen Science Apps is to become an important part in the everyday lives of their users in the long term, so that users can gain experience and can contribute important data  to scientific projects.

Monday, 18 March 2019

Day of Phenology at the ZAMG Vienna

On Wednesday, the 6th of March, the first "Day of Phenology" took place at the ZAMG in Vienna. We have also been invited by one of our project partners from the "Naturkalender App".

Wednesday, 13 March 2019

#CitSci2019 Special Feature - get your Citizen Science apps 50% off

Currently, the #CitSci2019 conference in Raleigh, NC is going on and we follow the workshops, sessions and comments via twitter from our SPOTTERON Citizen Science design office in Vienna, Europe. But since we always love to support Citizen Science, we decided spontanously to do another special for one project of any participant or group at the conference.

Monday, 04 March 2019

Citizen Science in the gis.Business Magazine: Knowledge in the Hands of Citizens

We are very happy to be featured in the new Citizen Sience 4.0 article by Maximilian Ueberham in the gis.Business magazine (Ausgabe 01/2019). After a short introduction about Citizen Science author Maximilian Ueberham presents Citizen Sience projects, including the SPOTTERON Citizen Science platform.

Monday, 18 February 2019

A new version release! SPOTTERON 2.6.0 includes User Roles, Flagging and Data Download for all Citizen Science Apps

We are happy to announce the release of the new SPOTTERON version 2.6.0! The next SPOTTERON Update brings 3 new extension, available for all Citizen Science apps running on the SPOTTERON platform. In the following blog entry we are going to explain these new features and their function.

Tuesday, 05 February 2019

This was the Vienna Ball of Sciences 2019 - with video!

On the 25th of January 2019 the Vienna City Hall hosted the Vienna Ball of Sciences for the 5th time, held under the motto: “Waltz and Science". As Citizen Scientists from SPOTTERON it was a great pleasure, that we had been invited to film the event just as we did the year before.

Sunday, 03 February 2019

Turning off the lights: a new "Night mode" in Citizen Science apps for observations from dusk till dawn

Sometimes, Citizen Science contributions are happening long after the sun has set. To reduce the blinding effect of a smartphone display, we have included a new night mode option for all Citizen Science apps on the SPOTTERON platform.

Wednesday, 23 January 2019

Why we recommend not more then 15 options to choose from lists in your Citizen Science app

When developing a Citizen Science app, you can influence usability in many ways. But these crucial decisions can be decisive factors when it comes down to whether they enjoy using it and do so regularly.

Monday, 31 December 2018

Happy New Year 2019 and thanks for all the Citizen Science!

Thanks for all the CitizenScience! We wish you a happy New Year's Eve and many more exciting #CitSci moments in the upcoming year. We have already new projects coming up, the first one about light pollution and Citizen Science will be ready in 1st of February. But for now, we are off until the end of first week of the new year - see you in 2019!

Friday, 21 December 2018

New feature: "User Roles" for Citizen Science apps (Data Quality Pack)

The next SPOTTERON Update brings 3 new extension for all Citizen Science apps on the platform. One of the new features are the upcoming "User Roles", part of SPOTTERON's data quality pack.

Monday, 19 November 2018

Brushturkeys Citizen Science App on TV

We were very proud to see that the latest Citizen Science project to join the SPOTTERON platform and also winner of the Australian Citizen Science Conference competition was featured on Australian news last week.

Tuesday, 06 November 2018

New Version release! SPOTTERON 2.5 brings Offline Maps and Badges for all Citizen Science apps

With the new SPOTTERON platform version 2.5 we bring two more highlights to all apps on the Citizen Science platform: First of all, the Offline Maps & Spots feature allows users to download map areas and spots on their phone for having them present, even when there is no internet connection available. This feature is a big improvement, specially for Citizen Science Apps, in which the main activity takes place often outdoors in the field where web connectivitiy is not always a given thing.

Monday, 22 October 2018

Citizen Science Summer School 2018

From 15th to 19th of October, the Citizen Science Summer School "Citizen Science in Theory and Practice" took place in "Grünau im Almtal", a small town in the south of Upper Austria. Grünau is particular famous for the KLF, the "Konrad Lorenz Reseach Station" where zoologist and Nobel Prize winner Konrad Lorenz studied animal behavior and became one of the founders of modern ethology. Not far from the research station, a whole week was dedicated to Citizen Science and many interesting workshops, sessions and collaboration teamwork took place.

Thursday, 04 October 2018

Preview: Offline Maps & Spots for Citizen Science Apps

Citizen Science often happens out in the field where network coverage can be weaker. That's why it can be especially helpful and pratical to pre-download map sections and save them locally on a smartphone for excursions and hiking trips.

Thursday, 04 October 2018

Impressions from the European Researchers Night in Vienna

Last week it was time for the annual European Researchers Night, a mega event which takes place simultaneously in hundreds of cities all over Europe, again. Of course we couldn't miss it and went to the event at the TGM in the 20th district of Vienna.

Thursday, 04 October 2018

New Citizen Science project-forum on SPOTTERON

Communication is an important factor in the Citizen Science field, not only within the projects themselves, but also among project leaders. For this purpose we implemented a forum on our website in the summer of 2018, which internally functions as a platform for exchange, networking and feedback.

Wednesday, 03 October 2018

Two new features: Top Spots & Meta-Infos

We recently added two new feature to SPOTTERONs ever extending 'feature ecosystem'. The two most recent additions 'Top Spots' and 'Meta-Infos' can enhance better data quality and more..

Wednesday, 03 October 2018

From paper sketch to Citizen Science observation data entry dialogue

Today we want to take you on a little trip in our blog. We want to take you on the journey of going from a paper sketch to a custom built Citizen Science observation entry dialogue alongside the most recent addition to the SPOTTERON Citizen Science platform - Brushturkeys.

Monday, 24 September 2018

Get the Citizen Science app manual along with your project

We recently added something new as part of all SPOTTERON packages: a short app-manual for all interactive Citizen Science projects on the platform.

Monday, 17 September 2018

A new addition to the platform - Welcome Brushturkeys

We are happy to welcome a new project to the SPOTTERON platform this month. As you can tell by the name, „Brushturkeys - birds in suburbia“ is all about Australian Brushturkeys extending their natural habitat, which usually includes rainforests and woodlands, to suburban areas.

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Video: Forum Citizen Science in Frankfurt, Germany

On 6th & 7th of September 2018, the "Forum Citizen Science" took place in Frankfurt, Germany, organised by the german Citizen Science hub "Bürger schaffen Wissen".

Tuesday, 04 September 2018

Hello there Frankfurt! See you at the #ForumCS

Hello there Frankfurt!

This Thursday and Friday, on the 6th and 7th of September, we will be in Frankfurt for the annual meetup of the German Citizen Science Community, the "Forum Citizen Science". We will be present during the entire conference, host a workshop and will also have a SPOTTERON stand.

Sunday, 26 August 2018

ECSA European Citizen Science Contest: Winner Announcement

Thanks for the many interesting submissions and your paticipation in the SPOTTERON Citizen Science contest for getting a free App in Europe! We are finally able to announce the winner (and a follow up project as second place) here on our Citizen Science blog:

Thursday, 09 August 2018

Collaborative Citizen Science - Project synergies in extension ecosystem

All Citizen Science projects on the SPOTTERON platform can use all custom extensions on the platform without additional costs from the start.

Monday, 25 June 2018

Article 13 threatens all Citizen Science projects - let`s take action now!

Last week, the European Parliament’s Legal Affairs Committee (JURI) ignored all advice by data scientists, creators and experts and voted for the Article 13 of the proposed Copyright Directive. This could mean the end of web-based Citizen Science.
Monday, 18 June 2018

ECSA 2018 - from the Conference about Citizen Science in Geneva, Switzerland

Every two years, a big conference about Citizen Science takes place in an European Country - this time we travelled to Geneva in Switzerland, where the ECSA 2018 was happening.

Tuesday, 29 May 2018

Impressions from national park Lobau

This weekend we got do some Shinrin Yoku and recharged our batteries in our very beloved viennese nature conservation area: Lobau, which is part of the national parc Danube-Auen, has been a protected area since 1978 and is our favourite playground for Citizen Science Adventures.

Monday, 28 May 2018

Let's meet Citizen Science! Episode 3 - Herpetofauna

During the "Long Night of Research" (Lange Nacht der Forschung) in Vienna Austria at the Museum of Natural History (NHM) we did not only meet with Irmgard Greilhuber from the Citizen Science project Mycodata from our last Episode of "Let's meet Citizen Science", we also got to meet Silke Schweiger and her project Herpetofauna by the NHM.

Monday, 21 May 2018

Let's meet up for Citizen Science! SPOTTERON at the ECSA Conference 2018 in Geneva, Switzerland

From 3rd to 5th of June 2018, the ECSA Conference 2018 and the general assembly of the European Citizen Science Association takes place in Geneva, Switzerland. As members of ECSA and platform for Citizen Science Apps we for sure take part during the whole time.

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Bye Bye Anslagstavlan | Public Boards!

 

After running on the SPOTTERON platform since september 2016, Anslagstavlan (which even had a SPOTTERON designed logo), has ended and will therefore also leave our platform. We want to commemorate the project a little with this entry in our blog.

Tuesday, 08 May 2018

New Infopanel Design: Learning by using Citizen Science Apps

Today we released the SPOTTERON platform update 2.1.4 for all Android and iOS apps and interactive maps. 

Sunday, 29 April 2018

Let's meet Citizen Science! Episode 2 - Austrian Mycological Society ÖMG

During the "Long Night of Research" (Lange Nacht der Forschung) in Vienna Austria at the Museum of Natural History (NHM) we met with Irmgard Greilhuber from the Citizen Science project Mycodata by the Austrian Mycological Society ÖMG. Irmgard is presenting the project and how Citizen Scientists can participate by submitting observations of mushrooms and fungi.

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Let's meet Citizen Science! Episode 1 - Nature's Calendar

We talked to Thomas Hübner from the Central Station for Meteorology and Geodynamics (ZAMG) during the "Long Night of Research" in the Museum of Natural History in Vienna, Austria about the new phenology Citizen Science project "Nature's Calendar" about the the 10 phenological seasons in the project and what Citizen Scientists can observe in the Citizen Science App for Android and IOS.

Thursday, 19 April 2018

Package L for custom interactive maps

Not every citizen science project has the need for own custom smartphone apps. Starting with April 2018, we offer a light-weight SPOTTERON package for Citizen Science projects, which provides an innovative web tool for desktop browsers..

Saturday, 14 April 2018

Meet CrowdWater! - SPOTTERON Citizen Science Adventure

Since the European Geosciences Union EGU holds its anual meeting in Vienna, Austria, we took the opportunity to catch up with Crowdwater, a Citizen Science project about hydrology and water levels of rivers, soil moisture and stream spotting, running on the SPOTTERON Citizen Science platform.

Sunday, 01 April 2018

Citizen Science Easter Egg Hunt 2018

Today we decided to went on a Easter Egg Hunt - and since it is raining heavily today we took this journey to another realm: the microcosm!

Wednesday, 07 March 2018

Finally! The first SPOTTERON Citizen Science Adventure is here!

We are really happy to present to you: the very first CITIZEN SCIENCE ADVENTURE! The idea has been lingering in our heads for quite some time now and we were finally able to get this new and exciting project started. The kick-off was made by our beloved Philipp Jonathan with a quick introduction to phenology and a common snowdrop he spotted in the Nature's Calendar app in a viennese parc this weekend.

Friday, 02 March 2018

Video: What we do for Citizen Science

For the current Give-Away of a free Citizen Science App on the SPOTTERON platform for Australia, we did a short introduction video about what we do for Citizen Science and about the traits of the platform itself.

Monday, 12 February 2018

Australia! Get your free Citizen Science Apps on the SPOTTERON platform

SPOTTERON goes Australia! We are happy to announce that we are giving away a customised geo-locatable free Citizen Science app among all members of the Australian Citizen Science Association that take part in the competition and tell us how their proposed geo-locatable citizen science app will increase scientific knowledge.

Sunday, 07 January 2018

New Citizen Science App Feature: Spot Statistics

A new feature is ready for use by all Citizen Science projects running on the SPOTTERON platform: Spot Statistics. The observation of change over time plays an important role in many Citizen Science projects, from hydrology, land coverage or phenology. In the CitSci project "Crowdwater", running on SPOTTERON, Citizen Scientist observe the change of water levels in streams and rivers. As an extension to the Citizen Science smartphone apps, we just released a new feature which introduces a new statistic panel in the detail view of a spot.

Friday, 22 December 2017

Citizen Science Christmas!

This year has been a big step (and with the release of the community package more like a giant leap) for the SPOTTERON Citizen Science Platform, and thanks to your help and interest, we can now offer a mobile and interactive channel for every CitSci project out there. 

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Start of the upcoming Top Citizen Science Projekt "Naturkalender"

The Sparkling Science Projekt "NaturVerrückt" ("CrazyNature"), currently running on the SPOTTERON Citizen Science Platform, is going to be relaunched and extended in the next months. The new Top Citizen Science-Projektes „Naturkalender“ is all about Phenology and Citizen Scientists can observe the development of various plant species via Smartphone App for Science.

Sunday, 05 November 2017

Citizen Science gets social: SPOTTERON TWO Milestone Release

We now provide a full feature community included in all Citizen Science projects running on the SPOTTERON platform. The new milestone version makes Citizen Science not fully mobile but also immersive. Imagine the potential of social interaction built directly into your science project - that's what SPOTTERON TWO is all about..

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Feature introduction: Citizen Science Community Comments

Through comments, users are able to interact with the spots directly in app in realtime. Posting comments is an important tool for both users and project teams, increasing the level of activity throughout the project and to provide information or make suggestions at observations. Below every spot in the Citizen Science app, users can find a tab with the comment section for observation-related comments.

Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Citizen Science & Communication: Send Direct Messages in your SPOTTERON CitSci App

Citizen Science is also about communication. With the upcoming direct message feature we release the first part of a series of SPOTTERON extensions, bringing projects and participants closer together.. 

Sunday, 23 April 2017

new User-Profiles in SPOTTERON

Who are the Citizen Scientists? Which profession or education do they have? Why are they participating in my Citizen Science project? With the new user profiles, these questions are a central element in the Citizen Science Systems SPOTTERON. The Citizen Scientists can now extend their user account with background information directly in the smartphone apps. Additionally, users can upload their own profile picture - because Citizen Science is also a personal matter.

Sunday, 15 January 2017

The future of Citizen Science Apps - SPOTTERON 1.0

We are very happy to announce that a major milestone for the SPOTTERON Citizen Science System has been reached. During the last months, we worked hard to put the underlaying technology on a completly new basis. With SPOTTERON 1.0 we now can provide you with a modern environment, fully specialized for the use in Citizen Science projects and ready for the future of mobile technology.

Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Merry Christmas, Citizen Science!

We just want to say Merry Christmas and a big thank you for this exciting year full of #CitizenScience and cool projects to run. SPOTTERON has gone a big step forward, becoming a sophisticated tool for Citizen Science and Environment Protection projects in international use. We are looking forward to 2017 with already upcoming App releases, but until then: Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Sidenote: Best Plants for air filtering #officeadvice

In the 80ties, NASA collaborated with the Associated Contractors of America (ALCA) to research which plants are best for filtering air and reducing the amount of various chemicals. Here is the Link to the complete study: Clean Air study - and the lovethegarden.com Community did put up this inforgraphic as a perfect guide for which plants you should cultivate at home and at your office. Our advise? All of them! SPOTTERON loves jungle:)

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

What Citizen Science can learn from Pokemon Go

The hype continues: millions of people worldwide are taking their smartphones, go out and hunt down virtual spieces called Pokemons. And those people are not just the hard core gamers or the pokemon fans out there - the phenomon reaches out far.

Thursday, 30 June 2016

#ECSA2016 and a new SPOTTERON project

Throwback Thursday for #ECSA2016,
and there are new projects in SPOTTERON!

Monday, 23 May 2016

What we do

Since 2014, we are providing services for science projects and institutions with a strong focus on design, technical professionality and reliablity. Trusted by universities, institutions and stakeholders across Europe and beyond, we are creating custom online solutions for science and Citizen Science applications.

Thursday, 29 October 2015

some thoughts on Cititzen Science: it needs a system

Currently in Barcelona, Spain, the yearly European Citizen Science Association summit is taking place. As not only an interested person in science and ecology but also as founder of SPOTTERON, events like this always result in following the various posts, tweets and streams online the whole days. At #ecsabcn In her keynote, Libby Hepborn from the Australian Citizen Science Association mentioned a something, which immediatly grabbed my attention.

@CSAustria also tweeted that statement:
"Libby Hepburn @CitSciOZ would like a "tripadvisor" for #citizenscience tools."

Shortnews

  • At SPOTTERON, we love it when science, design and art come together to create something quite special and unique. One of those special things are the clay animation videos by Max Helmberger. We asked Max a few questions about him and his work. Read more on the citizen science blog!

    Monday, 09 December 2019
  • The Release Notes of the SPOTTERON platform has been updated, the new version 2.9. brings the new "Validated data" feature with wihich the administrators now can set observations to "checked" and build a validated Citizen Science data set for scientific research directly in the Citizen Science app.

    Wednesday, 04 December 2019