The Zooniverse – Steven Bamford – 28-11-12

28th May 2012

Hi! I’m the blog, you may recall me from such shows as Galaxy Zoo with Boris Haeussler. Well today we shall be talking to Steven Bamford about the Zooniverse!

The Zooniverse is home to the internet’s largest, most popular and most successful citizen science projects. Galaxy Zoo is just one of them. They also have projects like Old Weather, Planet Hunters and more…

The Alphabet in Galaxies

Stay tuned!

Although Galaxy Zoo and The Zooniverse seems like a outreach project, it’s important to realise it’s not just about selling science to the public. It’s to get the science done that would otherwise take years to complete.

All 10 projects The Zooniverse has currently rely on humans and their brains to complete. There is a problem that computers cannot always distinguish the patterns the brain can, but one person cannot work as quickly as a computer does. This is the reason why their projects work.

Current Zooniverse Projects

Currently some of the active projects are Old Weather. Ancient Lives and Whale FM.

Current Zooniverse Projects

Old Weather looks at World War I weather reports from ships that traditional optical character recognition would struggle with. Check it out here:


Ancient Lives is similar but with Greek manuscripts, check it out here:

The Whale FM allows you to help marine researchers understand what whales are saying, I’m sure if they did it for bears Dave would have a go! Check it out here:

Galaxy Zoo has lead to 25 new papers on galaxies! Other projects have lead to other papers as well. But it’s not just about papers, the Zooniverse has lead to new discoveries within specific fields as well such as pea galaxies and Hanny’s Voorwerp

This is thought to be thought to be a portion of a gas-cloud, heated by the jet from a quasar. Click on the image on the right for a closer look.

Science in the News

The race to sponsor space begins –

Largest eye on space given home –