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Documentaries, society, technology

The Crowd and The Cloud

YEAR: 2017 | LENGTH: 4 parts (~57 minutes each)  |  SOURCE: PBS

description:

Are you interested in birds, fish, the oceans or streams in your community? Are you concerned about fracking, air quality, extreme weather, asthma, Alzheimer’s disease, Zika or other epidemics? Now you can do more than read about these issues. You can be part of the solution.

Smartphones, computers and mobile technology are enabling regular citizens to become part of a 21st century way of doing science. By observing their environments, monitoring neighborhoods, collecting information about the world and the things they care about, so-called “citizen scientists” are helping professional scientists to advance knowledge while speeding up new discoveries and innovations.

The results are improving health and welfare, assisting in wildlife conservation, and giving communities the power to create needed change and help themselves.

Citizen science has amazing promise, but also raises questions about data quality and privacy. Its potential and challenges are explored in The Crowd & The Cloud, a 4-part public television series which first premiered in April 2017. Hosted by former NASA Chief Scientist Waleed Abdalati, each episode takes viewers on a global tour of the projects and people on the front lines of this disruptive transformation in how science is done, and shows how anyone, anywhere can participate.

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