HYBRID COMMUNITY PARTICIPATION IN CROWDSOURCED EARLY WARNING SYSTEMS

Nick LaLone, Andrea H. Tapia, Nathan A. Case, Elizabeth MacDonald, Michelle Hall, Matt Heavner

ABSTRACT

In this paper we present Aurorasaurus: a website, a mobile application, and a citizen science initiative that allows a community of users to report and verify sightings of the Aurora Borealis. Through ad-hoc data indirectly offered through social media, a community of citizen scientists verify sightings of the Aurora Borealis. These verified data are tested against currently existing aurora-forecasting models. The insights these data provide are transformed into map and text-based forms. In addition, notifications are sent to interested participants in a timely manner.  This is a design test-bed for an early warning system (EWS) that is capable of detecting and communicating the earliest signs of disaster to community members in near real time. Most importantly, this system incorporates community participation in improving the quality of data mined from Twitter and direct community contributions.

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