Greeting Earthlings– Happy Earth Day!
Today, worldwide events demonstrate support for environmental awareness and protection. Projectline endeavors to make every day Earth Day by creating an eco-friendly environment. This includes purchasing products from companies that monitor their environmental impact, serving organic and locally sourced foods, encouraging green commuting, leasing office space that is energy efficient, and sponsoring a Green Team.
Every year, in honor of Earth Day, we also join the Puget Soundkeeper Alliance’s Lake Washington Kayak Cleanup.
In addition to the support of my Projectline family, as a Senior Marketing and Communications Project Manager at Microsoft Research, I have the privilege to work on different projects that help address some of the world’s most urgent challenges. Microsoft Research collaborates with the world’s top academic researchers and institutions to develop technologies that fuel data-intensive scientific research. One area of focus is earth, energy and environment.
Some Microsoft Research projects that help accelerate insight in the environmental and earth sciences include eco-testing a building before it’s built and using technology to help fight forest fires. That’s just a few examples of technology doing good (green) work.
In light of Earth Day, I wanted to share my excitement about a new tool that’s intended to better understand Latin America’s ecology and help protect threatened species. That new tool is LiveANDES (Advanced Network for the Distribution of Endangered Species). It’s developed by a partnership among researchers at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, the LACCIR (Latin American and Caribbean Collaborative ICT Research) Virtual Institute, and Microsoft Research.
LiveANDES is designed to collect, house, and analyze data about Latin America’s wildlife—data that could prove vital to the preservation of the region’s rich but increasingly threatened biodiversity, which has suffered grievously from loss of habitat and climate change. The platform is designed to store and parse data points about Latin America’s wildlife, including photographs, audio and video recordings, and location and sighting data. Researchers use the data stored in the tool to identify species living in Latin America, where they live today, and elements that may be threatening their future.
Ignacio Casas, Executive Director of LACCIR, explains that LiveANDES integrates with the fourth paradigm, a foundational concept of eScience, in which data-intensive computing facilitates scientific discovery. LiveANDES is designed to make parsing the huge volumes of data recorded manageable for researchers. In addition, LiveANDES can help red-list assessment for endangered species and improve information for illegal trafficking of wildlife species. LiveANDES can be developed for every ecological region or country around the world in a bottom up way.
For more information, check out the LiveANDES project page or visit the Microsoft Research Connections Blog. And to get involved with Projectline’s support of the Lake Washington clean-up or other volunteer events, email email@example.com.