Blog Archives

Ghost Towns in MyCoPortal I:Nuttallburg and Lawrence William Nuttall

Contributed by: Teresa Iturriaga, Rhianna Baldree, Alex Kuhn, Andrew N. Miller
University of Illinois, Illinois Natural History Survey, 1816 South Oak Street, Champaign, IL 61820-6970

We forget because remembering everything is impossible.

We also forget because remembering can be painful and raise too many questions that have no clear answers.

Such is the case regarding many ghost towns. They remind us of the transience of everything.

Research Spotlight: November 2016

Mapping Life – Quality Assessment of Novice vs. Expert Georeferencers

-- Contributed by Elizabeth R. Ellwood, FLlorida State University, with Henry L. Bart, Jr., Michael H. Doosey, Dean K. Jue, Justin G. Mann, Gil Nelson, Nelson Rios, Austin R. Mast

Citizen scientists participate in a host of activities that advance scientific research. These individuals are not trained scientists, but their contributions to research enable scientists to scale up their research across taxa and geographies. Read more here.

Research Spotlight: October 2016

Bees, bees and more bees - or are there? Monitoring the status of US bee populations using biological collections.

-- Contributed by Jillian Goodwin, iDigBio, interviewing Sam Droege, USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center

Sam Droege heads the USGS Native Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab based at the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Maryland, and is working with other researchers to assess the status of bees nationwide.

Research Spotlight: September 2016

Using island biogeography to investigate a weird and scenic landscape in southern Idaho

-- Contributed by Katie Peterson, PhD Student, Parent Lab, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Idaho

I am currently a third year PhD student at the University of Idaho in the Parent Lab. The Parent Lab studies the biodiversity and evolution of organisms that have recently colonized novel, “blank slate”, environments on islands....read more here.

iDigBio Hosts Workshop on Biodiversity Research Methods at Botany 2016 in Savannah, GA

For the third straight year, iDigBio hosted a full-day workshop on research methods using digitized herbarium specimen data at the annual Botany conference (Botany 2016, Savannah, GA), sponsored by the Botanical Society of America and its affiliated societies.  After successful workshops on Georeferencing (

Researchers Use MyCoPortal to Track Down Specimens Lost for Over 100 Years

Specimens collected in Nicaragua by American mycologist Charles Leonard Smith in the late 19th century were thought to have been lost for over 100 years.Through records created on the MyCoPortal, Gregorio Delgado and Ondřej Koukol of EMLab P&K (Phoenix, AZ) and Charles University (Prague, Czech Republic), respectively, were able to

Research Spotlight: August 2016

Preserving historic bee specimens to protect future bee biodiversity

-- Contributed by Joan Meiners, PhD Student, Ernest Lab, School of Natural Resources and Environment, University of Florida

For my PhD research in Dr. Morgan Ernest's lab at the University of Florida, I am using large datasets of occurrence records of native bees and their habitat associations to try to understand native bee biodiversity and foraging patterns...read more here.

 

Research Spotlight: May 2016

Playing with biological specimen data in iDigBio – limitations and solutions for research

-- Contributed by Shelley A James

Puerto Rico – warm Caribbean seas, high biodiversity, and coqui frogs.  iDigBio was invited to NatureServe’s Biodiversity without Boundaries 2016 meeting in April 2016 to share ideas and resources with members of the conservation community....read more here.

Can iDigBio be my research data repository?

Got research data? Need to submit your important data and media associated with biological voucher specimens to a data repository as part of your data life cycle best practices workflow? Are you thinking iDigBio would be the ideal repository for your data?

Although iDigBio is a repository for recordsets of primary biodiversity data of vouchered natural history collections, it is not a "data repository" as defined by most journals. Accepting individual researcher datasets, even those consisting of vouchered, natural history specimen digitized data and media, currently falls outside of the Scope of iDigBio.

Research Spotlight: June 2016

Polyploidy in ferns: biodiversity data documenting speciation!

-- Contributed by Blaine Marchant

My research for iDigBio addresses ecological and evolutionary questions by utilizing the enormous dataset provided by digitized natural history specimens from across North America.  My current project is aimed at investigating the ecological differentiation of polyploid plant species from their diploid progenitor species....read more here.

PHOIBOS2 at Biosphere 2 - practical hacking on identifiers

Permanent, globally unique identifiers are increasingly critical for the efficient analysis, publishing, tracking and reuse of dig data, including biological, geological and ecological information.  Practical Hacking On Identifiers at BiOSphere2 (PHOIBOS2) took place at The University of Arizona’s Biosphere 2, Oracle, Arizona, from Feb 17-19, 2016.  The Biosphere2 was an ideal location for a workshop - remote, spiny vegetation,

Call for Abstracts for iDigBio Symposium at the Pacific Science Congress 2016

iDigBio is pleased to announce the upcoming Symposium "Data and digital images: progress, tools and scientific need for digitizing Pacific biological specimen collections" at the 23rd Pacific Science Congress: Science, Technology and Innovation, June 13-17, 2016 in Taipei, Taiwan.

We invite presentations from students and professionals about the digitization of natural history collections data in the Asia-Pacific region and the use of mobilized collections data for research.

Call for student abstracts for iDigBio workshop at Island Biology 2016

Are you a student attending the Island Biology 2016 International Conference on Island Evolution, Ecology and Conservation, to be held on Terceira Island, Azores, from 18-22 July 2016? Do you have a research project which involves the digitization of vouchered natural history collections data from island communities, or utilizes published natural history collections data to better understand island ecosystems?
 

Research Spotlight: Using Museum Specimens to Refine Models of Species Distribution

Using museum specimens to refine models of species distribution

-- Contributed by Charlotte Germain-Aubrey

Using distribution models are crucial for estimating levels of biodiversity at the landscape level. Museum specimens are a significant source of information for these models as they witness current but also past habitats...read more here.

The Inaugural WeDigBio Event: Global Event Advances Digitization and Science Literacy

Hundreds of volunteers around the world transcribed >30,000 specimen labels at 25 events over four days (Oct 22–25, 2015) in the first Worldwide Engagement for Digitizing Biocollections (WeDigBio) event.  Events spanned a range of formal and informal education venues, from middle-school and undergraduate science classrooms to county libraries to museums, universities, and botanical gardens, such as the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural H

iDigBio and the EMu NHSIG in Philadelphia

iDigBio was delighted with Axiell's generous invitation to present a half-day digitization workshop at the annual meeting of the EMu user group Natural History Special Interest Group (NHSIG), held October 7 at the Penn Museum in Philadelphia. After determining via survey what EMu users would be interested in hearing about, we fashioned the following well-received agenda:

Exploring unique values in iDigBio using Apache Spark

Data exploration for large datasets is always challenging. Often you are left with deciding between subsetting the dataset (randomly or on some facet), making slow progress waiting for results just to find that something needs to be fixed, or optimizing code for performance when you don't even know if the result is going to be interesting. Having a high-performance system capable of ad-hoc investigation has always been difficult and/or expensive.

Tales from the iDigBio Booth: American Society of Mammalogists Conference

We (Deb Paul, Cathy Bester, and Molly Phillips) had a fun and productive time staffing the iDigBio exhibit at the 95th Annual meeting of the American Society of Mammalogists Conference in Jacksonville, Florida, June 12-15, 2015. We set up the 10’ exhibit with the TV displaying the iDigBio Explore Research video series (thank you to Kevin Love and Chris Baker for helping us set up!).

Tags: 

The Results of the 2015 iDigBio Community Survey are In!

Each year, iDigBio surveys its internal team and the collections community, broader scientific community, partners, stakeholders, and others interested in the national digitization effort to find out how we are doing. We use the feedback to inform our decision-making and to help us set priorities and determine next steps. We are grateful to the nearly 250 individuals who participated in this year’s survey!

SPNHC 2015: Sowing the Seeds of Digitization

The Florida Museum of Natural History and partners hosted the 30th Annual Meeting of the Society for the Preservation of Natural History Collections (SPNHC) from May 17-23, 2015, at the Hilton University of Florida Conference Center in Gainesville, Florida. The theme of the conference was “Making Natural History Collections Accessible Through New and Innovative Approaches and Partnerships”.

Field to Database (F2DB): field-data collecting trends and 21st century data skills

From Deb Paul, @idbdeb

This 4-day hands-on short course in March investigated current trends in collecting, and focused on best practices and skills development for supporting the collection and sharing of robust, fit-for-research-use data.

Call for Participation: Hackathon on iDigBio APIs/Services and Interoperability

Goal: Design, develop, implement, test and/or document uses of iDigBio data via its APIs

Location: University of Florida, Gainesville, FL

Dates and times: June 3-5, 2015; 8 am - 5 pm each day

To apply: https://ufl.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_6Wr1womZuY7O5o1 deadline February 28, 2015. Invited applicants will be notified by March 9th.

 

Women in Science and Engineering Science Spring Camp

Studies show that as girls transfer from middle to high school, they can perceive science as ‘uncool’ and subsequently loose interest in scientific careers. iDigBio postdoctoral associate Dr. Charlotte Germain-Aubrey, external vice-president of the Women in Science and Engineering (WiSE) at the University of Florida, created the WiSE Girlz Spring Science Camp to contradict this notion.

An Outsider’s view inside NSF: Trends and Tips

This article was generated from a webinar presented as an addendum to the iDigBio Education & Outreach Workshop held in Gainesville, FL, January 15-17, 2014. Participants were interested in finding out more about applying for grants available through the National Science Foundation (NSF) for Education and Outreach.

 

If you are targeting the National Science Foundation (NSF) for Education and Outreach funding, you may be looking for money in all the wrong places. With creativity and knowledge you can find the right places.

Education & Outreach Workshop

The Education and Outreach Workshop, held in Gainesville, FL from January 15-17, 2014, brought together representatives from each TCN to broaden our knowledge of E&O opportunities, resources, and strategies. Education and outreach are critical components of iDigBio TCNs. These activities are as wide-ranging and diverse as the TCNs themselves, and have likewise engaged a variety of students.

Mobilizing Small Herbaria Workshop Attracts Enthusiastic Participants

Any doubt about the importance of small herbaria or the enthusiasm of their curators was certainly dispelled at the recent Mobilizing Small Herbaria workshop held at Florida State University the week of December 9th.  Co-sponsored by iDigBio, the Robert K. Godfrey Herbarium at Florida State, the North American Network of Small Herbaria, and the Small Collections Network (SCNet), the event brought together about 30 collections professionals from 25 institutions representing 16 states.

Broadening Diversity in the Biological Sciences: A Workshop for Undergraduate Students

iDigBio, University of Central Florida, and the Florida Museum of Natural History are pleased to announce a workshop for undergraduate students focused on increasing participation of underrepresented populations in the biological sciences. The workshop will be held at the University of Central Florida, February 1, 2014 and is open to college freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors as well as recent college graduates. The goal of the workshop is to share important highlights about career and graduate study opportunities in the biological sciences.

Tags: 

FLMNH curators and iDigBio PIs presented a seminar to the UF Biology Department

Florida Museum of Natural History (FLMNH) curators Larry Page, Pam Soltis, and Bruce MacFadden presented a seminar about iDigBio to the Biology Department last Tuesday, November 5, 2013. This seminar provided an opportunity for the department to learn what the iDigBio project is all about and what research and educational opportunities are available.

iDigBio’s Paleo Digitization Workshop Draws more than 60 Attendees to New Haven

More than 60 paleontologists representing 41 institutions assembled in New Haven, CT the week of September 23rd, 2013 to share ideas, protocols, preferences, and strategies. This was iDigBio’s most populous workshop to date, with an assortment of excellent presentations and ample opportunities for rich discussion.

Welcome Libby Ellwood, New Postdoctoral Scholar with iDigBio

Austin Mast interviews Libby Ellwood, our newest postdoctoral scholar.

Mast: It's my pleasure to welcome you as iDigBio's newest postdoctoral scholar, Libby. Your research focus will be on broadening public participation in the digitization of biodiversity research specimens.  This is a goal to which your previous research background is well suited.  What do you see as the most relevant aspects of your previous graduate and postdoctoral research for this new position? 

Ellwood: Thanks, I’m thrilled to be a part of iDigBio’s dynamic team. I learned quickly in my graduate career that there is a wealth of information contained in museum specimens and that they are extremely useful in contemporary scientific research.

I earned my PhD in Biology from Boston University where my research focused on the effects of climate change on plants and animals. The metric I used to assess how much plants and animals were affected was phenology, the timing of biological events. Phenology includes the timing of when plants flower, when insects emerge and when migratory birds arrive, and many of these annual activities are impacted by temperature. In order to evaluate whether an organism’s phenology has changed, I first needed to understand the historical phenology—the date that a certain plant was flowering a hundred years ago, for example. Old journals, including those of Henry David Thoreau, were invaluable for this research. Some of these resources I found digitized online, while many others were tucked away deep in the special collections of museums and libraries. These records, combined with modern-day observations of the same plants and animals, allowed me to track phenology over 160 years. Several interesting discoveries came from this research, including the finding that many plant species are now flowering up to three weeks earlier now than they were in the 1850’s when Thoreau was observing them!

iDigBio Pamphlet Available

iDigBio has developed a pamphlet featuring brief descriptions about the aims of ADBC and iDigBio, with colorful, eye-catching digitization-related images. This material provides a simple and visual representation of iDigBio‘s mission, suitable for all audiences. We would love for you to distribute these within and beyond your institution in order to promote interest in iDigBio and digitization. If you would like one or more shipped to you domestically (no international), please send a request via this webform. You may also download a print-ready copy (22 MB PDF)

iDigBio Tours New UF CNS Data Center

Members of the iDigBio UF staff recently visited the new University of Florida Data Center at the Eastside Campus facility. The tour, led by Associate Director of Data Center Operations David Burdette, led visitors through the newly constructed $14M facility. The tour allowed visitors to see the complete operation, from the large server rooms, the monster backup power supplies, and the room chilling equipment.

Tags: 

Map of Life Collaboration Meeting

On Monday, February 25th, iDigBio PI's and project staff met with Walter Jetz,Ph.D. from the Map of Life project. Dr. Jetz shared with us how the The Map of Life assembles and integrates different sources of data describing species distributions worldwide. These data include expert species range maps, species occurrence points, ecoregions, and protected areas from providers like IUCN, WWF, GBIF, and more.

Update from the iDigBio Augmenting OCR working group

UPDATE II: More Details!!

Over the past 16 weeks, the aOCR wg has successfully orchestrated multiple initiatives intended to address some key issues on the working group's Wish List. Here, we briefly report on our recent Hackathon, held February 13-14, 2013 in Fort Worth, Texas, and on our "BioBlitz" at the iSchools iConference 2013, which was held February 12-15 in Forth Worth. We also discuss planned papers and new interactions resulting from these events. 

Congratulations to Dr. Anna K. Monfils: iDigBio Visiting Scholar

Please join iDigBio in congratulating Dr. Anna Monfils on her selection as our 2012 Visiting Scholar.  Anna is an Associate Professor at Central Michigan University and Director of the Central Michigan University Herbarium.

Dr. Monfils' winning proposal includes building generalized, web-deliverable specimen databasing protocols, designing web-based teaching activities focused on databasing, and organizing a workshop aimed at professional botanists, students and citizen scientists from throughout Michigan.

1st Annual iDigBio Augumenting OCR Hackathon: Fort Worth, Texas, February 13-14

 

iDigBio Augmenting OCR Hackathon

February 13-14, 2013, in Fort Worth, Texas

 Be a part of helping to get "dark data" out of millions of museum cabinets and into online databases!

UPDATE! See Hackathon Wiki: http://tinyurl.com/aocrhackathonwiki and Participate Remotely!

Congratulations to Dr. Corey Toler-Franklin, iDigBio's 2013 Visiting Scholar

Corey Toler-Franklin is a University of California President's Postdoctoral Fellow in the Computer Science Department at UC Davis. She is investigating new methods for capturing and processing digital media formats and imaging modalities to create more comprehensive representations of biological specimens. Dr. Toler Franklin's project will take her to the collections of AMNH and Duke University's Lemur Center, where she plans to use non-invasive optical capture techniques to digitize recent and fossil primates.

iDigBio Poster Available

iDigBio has developed a poster that provides a simple and visual representation of iDigBio‘s mission. We would love for you to put one up in your institution in order to promote interest in iDigBio and digitization. If you would like one or more shipped to you domestically (no international), please send a request via this webform. You may also download a copy to print locally (65 MB PDF).

Bruce MacFadden, iDigBio Director of Education and Outreach

Dr. Bruce MacFadden is Curator of Paleontology at the Florida Museum of Natural History and Director of Education and Outreach for iDigBio. His responsibilities with iDigBio include oversight of educational and outreach activities and their assessment at iDigBio, the TCNs and at other digitization projects involving biological collections. Here, he discusses his early fascination with dinosaurs and paleontology, pivotal experiences in undergraduate and graduate school that helped shape his career, and then some of his professional accomplishments.

iDigBio's Train the Trainers Georeferencing Update II - Out of the Dark Ages

The intensive, week-long First iDigBio Train-the-Trainers Georeferencing Workshop ended on October 12th, 2012. After a week, we are family and were sad to have to go home - but everyone seems very excited to get back to their own institutions to share what they learned and put it to good use in their own georeferencing and digitization projects.

iDigBio's Train the Trainers Georeferencing Update

The First iDigBio Train-the-Trainers Georeferencing Workshop is well into Day 4 now! Day one, participants and instructors met iDigBio PI Pam Soltis, Project Manager David Jennings, Biodiversity Informatics Manager Joanna McCaffrey, Cathy Bester, iDigBio Program Assistant and Kevin Love, the iDigBio IT magician who keeps us all in touch with one another and connected to the internet. Shari Ellis, iDigBio Project Evaluator, shared results of the iDigBio Pre-Workshop Survey for this workshop with all the participants.

Public Participation in Digitization of Biodiversity Specimens Workshop Report

iDigBio’s Public Participation in Digitization of Biodiversity Specimens Workshop was held on September 28-29 in Gainesville, FL.

Topics included the role of citizen science, ways to engage the public in digitization, methods to build public participant virtual communities, and an overview of biodiversity informatics software to facilitate public participation. Visit the workshop wiki page for links to the final agenda, the GoogleDoc, and the presentations.

Meet David Jennings, iDigBio Project Manager

 

iDigBio is very pleased to welcome David Jennings as our new Project Manager! David is an industrial/mechanical engineer with over 18 years of experience in project management and leadership and will be responsible for overseeing day-to-day operations, developing requirements, coordinating activities within iDigBio, and coordinating activities between iDigBio and other networks/collections.

2012 Year in Review

 

On 30 June 2012, iDigBio completed its first year of operation. As the national resource for the NSF-funded Advancing Digitization of Biodiversity Collections(ADBC), our first year required that we identify and overcome major organizational hurdles as we develop a national infrastructure for the ADBC institutions. We are pleased to report that our first year was highly successful. In this article, we enumerate some of our major activities and accomplishments.

Meet Corinna Gries, PI and head of the North American Lichens and Bryophytes TCN

 

Dr. Corinna Gries is PI and head of the North American Lichens and Bryophytes Thematic Collections Network. An accomplished researcher and programmer, here she is interviewed by Jill Holliday and discusses some of the history of specimen databasing, the goal of the North American Lichens and Bryophytes TCN, and the importance of public participation and crowd-sourcing to the TCN databasing projects.

Holliday:  Corinna, you are the head of the North American Lichens and Bryophytes TCN.

Tags: 

Public Participation in Digitization of Biodiversity Specimens Workshop

 

Public Participation in Digitization of Biodiversity Specimens Workshop
University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
September 28 - 29, 2012

iDigBio, the National Science Foundation’s national HUB for Advancing Digitization of Biodiversity Collections (ADBC), is offering a workshop focused on engaging the public in the digitization of the approximately one billion biodiversity specimens housed in collections across the U.S. The workshop will explore how to involve the public in ways that are interesting and educational but also efficient and reliable for the facilities managing the digitization.

Tags: 

Paleocollections Digitization Workshop Report

Bruce MacFadden reports on the recent Paleocollections Digitization Workshop hosted by iDigBio and FLMNH. The workshop was held to assess the status and future of digitized collections within the paleontological community. Presentations, discussions and breakout sessions focused on three themes: 1) tools, datapases and portals, 2) digitization and workflows, and 3) research applications and Grand Challenges.  

Updated: Digitizing Plant Collections Workshop

Digitizing Vascular and Non-Vascular Plant Collections
Valdosta State University, Valdosta GA
September 17th - 18th, 2012

iDigBio, the National Science Foundation’s HUB for Advancing Digitization of Biological Collections (ADBC), is offering a series of preparation-specific workshops focusing on organizing, launching, and maintaining a biological collections digitization program. The target audiences for these workshops include collections managers, curators, and directors in institutions that are in the initial stages of implementing or planning a digitization program, regardless of collection size.

Tags: 

InvertNet Digitization Workshop Report

The InvertNet TCN reports on the details and accomplishments of the InvertNet Spring Workshop, which was held at University of Illinois/Illinois Natural History Survey. Presentations and breakout groups covered topics including progress in digitizing collections, information on current database platforms, and public outreach and educational activities. Hands-on sessions afforded an opportunity for participants to learn about different software and hardware tools related to digitization workflows.

iDigBio Botany 2012 Digitization Workshop - Open Registration

Registration is open for the Specimen Digitization Tools and Practices Workshop at the Botany 2012 Conference.  The workshop will introduce current and future biological and paleontological specimen collections staff to resources and workflows that can lead to greater efficiencies in the digitization of their collections. The workshop will be held from 8:00 AM – 5:30 PM on Thursday, July 12, the day after the conference at the conference facility. Note: you do NOT have to attend the conference to attend the workshop.

iDigBio Call for Community Appliances

An important activity of iDigBio is to deliver IT infrastructure and services for a highly coordinated biocollections digitization community.

Through the use of computer appliances, the community will interact with the iDigBio storage cloud and specimen database.

The iDigBio team seeks to team up with developers of tools to guide development, disseminate, and host virtual appliances that integrate such tools.

Workshop for Developing Robust Object to Image to Data (DROID) Workflows

 

It is our pleasure to announce the Developing Robust Object to Image to Data Workflows (DROID) Workshop to be held at the University of Florida in Gainesville, FL. The workshop is designed to identify existing optimal digitization workflows, as well as process and technology gaps that must be bridged in order to achieve the scope of digitization required to meet the Grand Challenge. The workshop is co-sponsored by Integrated Digitized Biocollections (iDigBio) and Software Infrastructure for Sustained Innovation (S2I2). It will be held on May 30th and May 31st. Additional details may be obtained from the workshop overview.

Up to five participant slots are available for applicants. Accepted participants will be provided with travel, lodging and meals to attend the workshop.

Congratulations to Dr. Anna K. Monfils, iDigBio's 2012 Visiting Scholar

Please join iDigBio in congratulating Dr. Anna Monfils on her selection as our 2012 Visiting Scholar.  Anna is an Associate Professor at Central Michigan University and Director of the Central Michigan University Herbarium.

Dr. Monfils' winning proposal includes building generalized, web-deliverable specimen databasing protocols, designing web-based teaching activities focused on databasing, and organizing a workshop aimed at professional botanists, students and citizen scientists from throughout Michigan.

Dr. Larry Page: Documenting Diversity

Dr. Larry Page is the Project Director for iDigBio, where he is responsible for overall project management, oversight of the national resource activities, and implementation of the strategic plan. He is based at the Florida Museum of Natural History, where he is Director of the University of Florida Biodiversity Institute and Curator of Fishes. Here, Dr. Page is interviewed by Jill Holliday, executive editor of the iDigBio e-newsletter.

Tags: 

Workshop and Symposium at Botany 2012

It is our pleasure to announce the Specimen Digitization Tools and Practices Workshop at the Botany 2012 Conference. The workshop is designed to introduce current and future biological and paleontological specimen collections staff to resources and workflows that can lead to greater efficiencies in the digitization of their collections. The workshop is organized by iDigBio, the National Resource for Advancing Digitization of Biological Collections.  It will be held from 8:00AM – 5:00PM on Thursday, July 12, the day after the conference at the conference facility. A dinner for workshop participants will follow.

Meet the iDigBio Staff: An Interview with Gil Nelson

Meet the iDigBio Staff: An Interview with Gil Nelson

3 February 2012

Gil Nelson is iDigBio’s digitization specialist, with a focus on developing and improving digitization workflows and providing digitization support for the Thematic Collections Network projects.   He is based at Florida State University.  Here, Gil Nelson is interviewed by Austin Mast, a collaborator with Nelson on prior projects and a member of iDigBio’s Steering Committee.

Tags: 

iDigBio Summit Wrap-Up

The 2011 summit to kick-off the iDigBio project concluded on December 1st, 2011. By all accounts, this endeavor was a tremendous success, and enabled us to initiate a detailed dialog with representatives from the Thematic Collections Networks (TCNs) and other Advancing Digitization of Biodiversity Collections (ADBC) projects. Participants provided user insight into ongoing activities, projected progress, and resources available to the community.

Tags: 

New Resources from iDigBio

The iDigBio team plans regular Blog and Wiki contributions that provide useful resources to TCNs and others who are in the process of imaging and databasing biological collections. The newest contributions, available now, include a blog post outlining important global issues and decision points to be resolved prior to initiating an imaging project, and three new glossaries that provide definitions of toolsprojects and organizations, and terms important to the digitization effort. The glossaries are posted on the iDigBio wiki and are editable by registered users. Our intent is for the biological collections community to enhance these glossaries by making regular additions and contributions.

Digitizing Biological Collections: Global Issues and Decision Points

Imaging and databasing a biological collection seems like a straightforward task: procure the specimens, extract the data, take the image, and serve the image and data on the internet. However, in most cases there are numerous preliminary global issues and decision points to be resolved before actual imaging and data extraction can begin.

The Grand Challenge - Uniting the Nation’s Biodiversity Collections through Digitization

On any given evening, it is commonplace for the nightly news to refer to debt and spending amounts in the billions and trillions of dollars.

The use of these massive numbers is so ubiquitous that many of us have become numb to the true magnitude of what one billion objects represent.

Consider this: to count from one to one billion, one number per second, without breaks or sleep, would take you thirty one years!

Tags: