Smartphones aren’t just for games and checking your email anymore! Today, these mobile devices can be used to better the world around us by helping scientists understand more about it. Thanks to the distribution of mobiles research can be crowd-sourced to provide information that would otherwise go unnoticed.
Below is one of ten ways that you can use your phone to make the world a little better:
5. Inventory your Local Wildlife
The goal of Project NOAH (Networked Organisms and Habitats) is pretty ambitious: â€œbuild the go-to platform for documenting all the worldâ€™s organisms.â€ Their app has two modes. â€œSpottingsâ€ lets you take photos of plants and animals you see, categorize and describe them and then submit the data for viewing on NOAHâ€™s website and use by researchers for population and distribution studies.
Donâ€™t know what youâ€™re looking at? Check a box when you submit your photo and other users and scientists can help you identify the species. You can also use the location-based field guides to see other usersâ€™ Spottings near your location and learn more about your local wildlife. â€œField Missionsâ€ let you help out with crowdsourced data collection for specific studies that labs have submitted to NOAH. You might be asked to photograph invasive beetles near your home, or log GPS coordinates when migrating flocks of birds pass over you, and if discovering wildlife and helping scientists isnâ€™t enough motivation, completing missions also earns you cool badges in the app. Project NOAH is available for free for iOS and Android devices