Sunday, September 19, 2010

Favourite Research Method of the Week

As a supplementary post (and sorry if this is bad form), allow me to bring your attention to a project I heard about while making dinner last Monday evening.

Research methods were on my mind, and so my ears pricked up when CBC's As it Happens reported on a new initiative out of California that enlists volunteer participation in tracking roadkill on the side of the highway (click here to listen to the episode). It's called the California Roadkill Observation System (CROS), and it uses an online form to help volunteers report sightings by indicating species, specifying location (using either a Google Maps application built into the form, or one's own coordinates, presumably from an portable GPS navigation device), and even by uploading photos of the animal remains. To this date, the CROS website has received reports from more than 400 registered observers of over 7000 fatal accidents involving just in excess of 200 distinct species. And according to's Technolog, CROS is developing an app to make roadkill reporting even easier.

After this report and my subsequent visit to the CROC website (which includes a gallery for assistance in species identification), I was no longer in any rush to get to my dinner.


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  2. The old saying never falters: "There's an app for that."

    I think it is amazing how the Internet, and access to it, brings information right to our fingertips. But is it really necessary for the general public to know what a cottontail rabbit looks like after being trampled by a truck?

    Poor Mr. Gary Rotta - he's seen a lot these past couple of days.