I'll get back to my trip report momentarily, but I just wanted to share one of the most exciting (to me) data resources I've seen in a long time.
I went to a satellite group of the White House mapathon this past Thursday. (A mapathon is when a group of people get together to do open source mapping for a good cause. One example would be using satellite pictures to identify structures that might need to be sprayed for mosquitos as part of a malaria prevention effort.) If I had been more on-the-ball, I might have gone to the White House, so I was at first a little disappointed, but it all worked out OK, since if I hadn't gone to the U.S. Geological Survey for the mapathon, I would never have learned about BISON (with which I'm now a little obsessed).
BISON (Biodiversity Information Serving Our Nation) is an effort to "collect species occurrence data, records of an organism at a particular time in a particular place, as a primary or ancillary function of many biological field investigations." As of right now, they have over 260 million species occurrence records, cataloging over 300,000 species. Here's an example of things that could be built with this enormous database.
BISON only has U.S. data, but it's just one node of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF). The GBIF houses over 650 million occurrences on over 1.5 million species. Here's their page for exploring their data by countryand here's their page for exploring their data by species.
Anyway, I still play around sometimes with the idea of some kind of travel website based on sorting by species you want to see/what will you see if you go to X place at Y time. If anyone wants to play around with the data with me, I'd be happy to have company, on this or any other project -- I just think it's super neat.
@Safaridude You're the only person I know for sure is working in conservation, though I know there must be many others. I thought professional conservationists might be particularly interested, though they possibly already know about this.
Edited to add: I realized I should have put in links to the mapathon information, just in case anyone was interested in that. Here's where you can find out about the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team and here's where you can learn to map if you're interested in contributing (pretty much anyone can contribute -- no special technical knowledge is required).
Edited by hannahcat, 09 July 2016 - 10:29 PM.