Popular Science: Open data is a blessing for science—but it comes with its own curses

Popular Science: Open data is a blessing for science—but it comes with its own curses. “iNaturalist’s Seek is a great example of an organization doing something interesting and otherwise impossible without a large, open dataset. These kinds of datasets are both a hallmark and a driving force of scientific research in the information age, a period defined by the widespread use of powerful computers. They have become a new lens through which scientists view the world around us, and have enabled the creation of tools that also make science accessible to the public.”

Lanfrica: A database for African languages developed by a student of Jacobs University (EurekAlert)

EurekAlert: Lanfrica: A database for African languages developed by a student of Jacobs University. “‘We want to improve the visibility and representation of African languages on the Internet,’ explained Bonaventure [Dossou]. Discoverability is limited not only because English dominates machine learning technologies, and language assistants from Google or Apple barely support African languages. But also because many African languages are not written languages. Often, only a few texts and sources exist as a data basis for NLP technologies (Natural Language Processing) such as machine translation. Lanfrica is intended to remedy this situation. It sees itself as a catalog, a research tool that provides easy and clear access to existing research, data packages or archives. And it aims to bring together existing initiatives dealing with the machine readability of African languages.”

Monterey Herald: Monterey Bay Aquarium shares a treasure trove of data about young white sharks

Monterey Herald: Monterey Bay Aquarium shares a treasure trove of data about young white sharks. “The Monterey Bay Aquarium and its collaborators have released a cache of data about great white sharks they’ve been collecting for over 20 years. Earlier this month, an international team of scientists and aquarists led by John O’Sullivan, the director of collections at the Monterey Bay Aquarium and Chris Lowe of CSU Long Beach published a dataset… containing decades’ worth of information about juvenile white sharks. Researchers all over the world can now use the data to help them understand where white sharks go during their seasonal migrations, what ocean conditions they prefer and how they interact with other fish.”

University of Bath: New modelling shows ‘shielding’ instead of lockdowns would have led to tens of thousands more deaths

University of Bath: New modelling shows ‘shielding’ instead of lockdowns would have led to tens of thousands more deaths . “Shielding strategies or ‘focused protection’, as advocated for in the Great Barrington Declaration, would have been impossible to implement in practice and would have likely led to far worse outcomes. Even if implemented perfectly, the modelling reveals that allowing the infection to spread through less vulnerable groups prior to vaccination would have overwhelmed health care capacity in the UK and led to tens of thousands of unnecessary deaths. In reality, practical considerations would have meant that large numbers of vulnerable people who were supposed to be protected would also have died.”

NIWA: Easy access to environmental research data

National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA): Easy access to environmental research data. “New Zealand’s seven Crown Research Institutes (CRIs) have created the National Environmental Data Centre (NEDC) website to make the environmental information held by CRIs more accessible to all New Zealanders. The datasets include a huge range of information from climate and atmosphere, freshwater, land and oceans, including biodiversity and geological data.”

MIT News: Estimating the informativeness of data

MIT News: Estimating the informativeness of data. “Not all data are created equal. But how much information is any piece of data likely to contain? This question is central to medical testing, designing scientific experiments, and even to everyday human learning and thinking. MIT researchers have developed a new way to solve this problem, opening up new applications in medicine, scientific discovery, cognitive science, and artificial intelligence.”

Norwegian Institute of Public Health: NOURISHING and MOVING policy databases: full datasets from 14 European countries are now available

Norwegian Institute of Public Health: NOURISHING and MOVING policy databases: full datasets from 14 European countries are now available. “CO-CREATE colleagues at the World Cancer Research Fund International have been hard at work generating evidence and infrastructure to support local and national policy changes to make healthy choices the easiest, most appealing, and preferred choices for adolescents across Europe. The NOURISHING and MOVING databases highlight where governments need to take action to promote healthy diets and decrease physical inactivity. New datasets of diet-related policies and physical activity policies across Europe have been added to both databases.”

Duke Today: Tracking Atrocities Using Big Data

Duke Today: Tracking Atrocities Using Big Data. “The #DataforUkraine project uses hourly data from Twitter to report on incidents in Ukraine. Relying on several hundred accounts to identify Twitter communities of interest, it classifies millions of individual tweets into four event categories: civilian resistance, human rights abuses, internally displaced people and humanitarian support and needs.”

Press release: Big data in geochemistry for international research (University of Göttingen)

University of Göttingen: Press release: Big data in geochemistry for international research. ” Large data sets are playing an increasingly important role in solving scientific questions in geochemistry. Now the University of Göttingen has inherited GEOROC, the largest geochemical database for rocks and minerals from the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry (Mainz). The database has been revised and modernised in its structure and made available to its global users in a new form. The ‘GEOROC’ database, the largest global data collection of rock and mineral compositions, currently contains analyses from over 20,000 individual publications (the oldest dating back to 1883) from 614,000 samples. Together, these data represent almost 32 million individual analytical values.”

Princeton University: What climate choices should cities make? A Princeton data tool helps planners set priorities.

Princeton University: What climate choices should cities make? A Princeton data tool helps planners set priorities.. “A new tool for city planners helps them design a portfolio of actions that encompasses compact development, smart electric mobility, electric heating systems, mass timber construction, urban reforestation, and technologies that allow resources to circulate efficiently through the food, waste and energy sectors.”

University at Buffalo: These stunning 3D models of coral reefs are a crucial research tool

University at Buffalo: These stunning 3D models of coral reefs are a crucial research tool. “Where do coral larvae, called planulae, like to settle? What seascapes help youngsters of different coral species flourish? And do varying species compete for the same microhabitats/spots on the reef? To study these questions, University at Buffalo scientist Ángela Martínez Quintana has created stunning 3D digital models that visualize the surface of coral reefs in painstaking detail. And these artful re-creations aren’t just beautiful: They’re also filled with data on the distribution of young corals, known as recruits, that scientists are analyzing.”

Cities Today: The rise of the data steward

Cities Today: The rise of the data steward. “As data use and collaboration become more advanced, there is a need for a new profession within the public and private sectors, says Stefaan Verhulst, Co-Founder and Chief Research and Development Officer at New York University’s The GovLab. He calls this role the ‘data steward’ and is also seeking to expand existing definitions of the term.”