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Building the NASA Citizen Science Community Meeting

Greeting from Tucson Arizona. I’m here with Planet Four PI Candy Hansen at the Building the NASA Citizen Science Community Meeting. The aim of the workshop is to bring together researchers engaged in successful citizen science projects, citizen science experts and platforms supporting citizen science projects (including representatives from Zooniverse), the NASA Science Mission Directorate, and researchers interested in applying citizen science to their research problems.

I gave an invited talk (my slides are included below) highlighting science results and the success of Planet Four and advertising Planet Four: Terrains and Planet Four: Ridges. It’s exciting that people in the planetary and astronomical community see Planet Four as a successful project. That is in large part due to the contributions of the Planet Four volunteer community.  It was great to talk about Planet Four’s first paper and also mention the science team is working on three other publications right now based on the first fan and blotch catalog.



Planet Four Talk at the Division for Planetary Sciences

Greetings from Knoxville, Tennessee. Earlier this morning, I presented our first catalog and early results from comparing the fan directions over two Mars years at the American Astronomical Society’s Division for Planetary Science meeting.  Here’s my slides.





Planet Four at the Division for Planetary Sciences Meeting

The American Astronomical Society’s Division for Planetary Sciences meeting was held last week in Provo, Utah. We presented results from Planet Four: Terrains, but it wasn’t the only Planet Four project represented. There was an update on Planet Four. Chase Hatcher attended the meeting ready to talk about Planet Four. Chase is, a student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and he spent this past summer working in Colorado with Anya and Michael on Planet Four analysis.

Chase presented a poster on his work at DPS as well as some of the other progress on the Planet Four data analysis we’ve made. Thanks Chase for all the hard work and for representing Planet Four. You can find Chase’s poster below.



Planet Four: Terrains at the Division for Planetary Sciences Conferences


Image credit: DPS/AAS/

Greetings from Provo, Utah. I’m here to present science results on Planet Four: Terrains among other things.  The DPS is now trying out a new set of poster presentations using large touch screens, which they are calling iPosters. My abstract was selected for an iPoster. This means you can currently explore view and my iPoster online here. Enjoy!

Sagan Medal Public Talk at the Division for Planetary Sciences Meeting

This week I’m receiving the American Astronomical Society’s Division for Planetary Society’s Carl Sagan Medal for Excellence in Public Communication in Planetary Science in part for my activities with Planet Four. You can read the citation here.

I want to thank the Planet Four team and the Zooniverse team for all that they do. The Planet Four projects really are a team effort. I also want to take a moment to recognize the nearly 200,000 volunteers who have contributed their time and energy to the Planet Four projects.  A little slice of this medal belongs to each and every one of you. I’ve been truly amazed what your combined effort has achieved, and I can’t wait to see what comes next. Thank you for time and your contributions. We couldn’t do this without you.

It’s traditional for the Sagan Medal recipients to give a public talk one evening of the meeting. I just got back a little while ago from giving the public talk on Brigham Young University’s campus. This year there are two Sagan Medal recipients: myself and Henry Throop, so we each gave a half hour public talk. I decided to talk about Planet Four and Planet Four: Terrains.

Last night, I recorded my practice run through of the talk so that I could share the talk with all of you. This very close to the version I gave tonight in Provo, Utah.

Planet Four at the 47th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference

The abstracts for the accepted posters and talks at the 47th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference (LPSC) are now posted online. At the meeting in March, Planet Four and Planet Four: Terrains will be well represented at the Woodlands, Texas. Michael and Candy will be there with two posters presenting results thanks to your time and your clicks.

You can read Michael’s Planet Four poster abstract here and Candy’s poster abstract on Planet Four: Terrains here. The Planet Four: Terrains abstract contains examples of areas of interest found thanks to volunteers on Talk posting about what they’ve seen on Talk. Thanks especially to Ray Perry, Andy Martin, and Bill Wagner for their help spotting some interesting images that were included in the abstract.

DPS 2015 Conference Poster


Michael Aye’s 2015 DPS poster presenting the latest from Planet Four – Original source at

At the beginning of the month, Michael presented a poster at the Division of Planetary Sciences Conference in National Harbor Maryland. He digitally archived his poster so that we can share it with all of you. As you can see we’re nearly finished with the pipeline that combines the multiple individual volunteer markings to identify fans and blotches.  You can find the high resolution version of the poster here.


DPS 2015

Image credit:

Image credit: DPS

Greeting from somewhere over the Pacific ocean. I’m on a plane headed for the National Harbor, Maryland for the American Astronomical Society’s Division of Planetary Sciences (DPS) meeting. This is one of the largest yearly gathering of planetary scientists in the world with people presenting work on a wide variety of topics including the Jovian satellites, comets, Mars, exoplanets, and Kuiper belt objects.

The entire core Planet Four science team will be attending the meeting this year, and Michael will presenting a poster on Planet Four and some new preliminary results. As the team is scattered in a few different places, this is the first time that we all will be in the same room together. We’ve mostly been working together remotely thanks to Skype, email, twitter, and telecons, with a few individual visits interspersed over the past few years.

DPS will be an intense week of talks, posters, cool new science results, catching up with collaborators, and saying hello to old friends.  I’m looking forward to it and to the Planet Four team dinner we have scheduled later in the week to to plan the coming months of data reduction and most importantly to sit down to all work on the final tasks for the first paper.

You can follow along with all the latest news and happenings from DPS attendees tweeting with the hasthag #DPS15

Planet Four at WIRED2015


A huge thanks to the WIREDUK team for giving me the opportunity to talk about Planet Four at WIRED2015. It  was an amazing experience to share what the hard work and effort that everyone involved in Planet (including over 130,000 people across the Earth) is achieving on Mars.  I ended my talk with ‘people on this world are helping us study the next,’ and it’s absolutely true. If you do have a spare minute, we have lots images to still go through. You can contribute to the Mars exploration today at and

We made the highlights from the first day video:

Here’s some pictures I took from the two days:

IMG_3223  IMG_3226

Meg Schwamb from the Planet Four Team talking about the project at WIRED2015 - image credit: @blkbeveragesUK (

Meg Schwamb from the Planet Four Team talking about the project at WIRED2015 – image credit: @blkbeveragesUK (


WIRED2015 meets Planet Four

I’m thrilled to say that I’ll be talking today about Planet Four and Planet Four: Terrains at this year’s WIRED2015 in London. I’m one of 14 Innovation Fellows selected this year by WIRED UK that will be speaking at today and tomorrow’s event. You can follow along on Twitter with #WIRED2015.

I’m excited to be included in such a fantastic line up of artists, musicians, chefs, activists, authors, scientists, engineers, and innovators. I’ll be speaking today in the aptly named ‘Turning Data Into Understanding’ session.  I’ll be be sharing  the motivations behind the projects, and the work of the 130,000+ collaborators who click by click are helping to better understand Mars. It really is due to your help and effort that we can explore the seasonal processes of the Mars’ south pole like never before.

Thank you for all your contributions, and there’s more of the South Pole to sift through. So if you have a spare moment, please map a fan or two on Planet Four or classify an image at Planet Four: Terrains.

Parts of WIRED2015 will be live streamed. A selection of the talks will be shown here over the next two days. So you might be able to catch my talk which is scheduled from 5:35 to 5:50 pm BST today. The full agenda can be found here.