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# Earth Science Data Challenge

For those who have enough spare time for playing around with earth science data there is now the

NASA Challenge: New Ways to Use, Visualize, and Analyze OpenNEX Climate and Earth Science Data:

NASA recently made available to the public a large collection of Climate and Earth Sciences satellite data and is seeking new and creative ways to utilize this data to address initiatives in the President’s Climate Action Plan. The data, available through the Open NASA Earth Exchange (OpenNEX) platform hosted by Amazon Web Services (AWS), consists of large amounts of global land surface imaging, vegetation conditions, climate observations and climate projections. This Challenge focuses on gathering new and creative ideas for how to use, visualize, analyze or otherwise utilize the datasets and seeks input from climate experts, hobbyists, citizen scientists and all others with ideas for how to use the data to address items in the President’s plan.

Why did I write spare time? Because if one takes the (unknown) renomme (?) of winning a prize there aside and if one takes aside a rather unspecified prospect of eventual further (paid?) work (?) opportunities:

Don’t worry if you can’t put your ideas into action, as the results and submissions from this Challenge will form the input for a second Challenge, which will focus on building the tools and apps suggested and conceptualized in this Challenge.

and if one takes the challenge serious then for any decently structured set of ideas this seem to involve at least a week of full time work, which would -given a prize of 1000 dollars- amount to a sum of around 20dollars/hour which in the turn means that you would need to compete with a unknown number of participants (100?) for eventually getting back that salary for a week long 20dollars/hour job. That is if this is not partially a hobby or if you don't cut back on ideas and presentation work a guaranteed 10dollars/hour at the next fast food chain could eventually be more sustainable.

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I believe this is the old ground data, I could be mistaken, made obsolete by the new GPM and TRIMM satellite sensors. So $20/hr is a good pay rate for obsolete data hosted by a retail shopping giant i.e. Amazon. Dara Comment Source:I believe this is the old ground data, I could be mistaken, made obsolete by the new GPM and TRIMM satellite sensors. So$20/hr is a good pay rate for obsolete data hosted by a retail shopping giant i.e. Amazon. Dara
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edited September 2014

As it seems you can even make 21 $an hour at some fast food chains - here the report of a young women in denmark. In the US this seems to be however more difficult. Comment Source:As it seems you can even make 21$ an hour at some fast food chains - here the <a href="http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2014/05/15/fight-for-15-try-21/">report of a young women in denmark.</a> In the US this seems to be however <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-09-04/fast-food-protesters-arrested-outside-mcdonald-s-in-times-square.html">more difficult.</a>
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re: "Earth Science Data Challenge" results

I admit that I submitted a solution for the challenge as a lark and got back the results today:

I want to thank you for your efforts in submitting a proposal on the InnoCentive Challenge - NASA Challenge: Build an App to Utilize OpenNEX Climate and Earth Science Data. The Seeker Scientists have concluded their evaluation of your proposal and have chosen not to employ the solution that you submitted. They provided us with the following comments on your submission: "The proposed solution is not responsive to the objectives and requirements of the challenge. Specific Comments: 1) Submission describes semantic web server developed in the past. 2) It's not clear how this submission links to modeling the southern oscillation index. Contains links to a blog, github but the links are dead or old. 3) No Application Development or codes provided."

I spent about an hour or two writing a submission, which I figured was worth a gamble to perhaps get some broader recognition for the work. The $25K prize they were offering is peanuts and really embarrassing for what they offered in exchange for demanding nearly shrink-wrapped software with code and user's manuals. I don't think they get that open-source collaboration is the way problems will get solved ... Comment Source:re: "Earth Science Data Challenge" results I admit that I submitted a solution for the challenge as a lark and got back the results today: > I want to thank you for your efforts in submitting a proposal on the InnoCentive Challenge - NASA Challenge: Build an App to Utilize OpenNEX Climate and Earth Science Data. The Seeker Scientists have concluded their evaluation of your proposal and have chosen not to employ the solution that you submitted. They provided us with the following comments on your submission: **"The proposed solution is not responsive to the objectives and requirements of the challenge. Specific Comments: 1) Submission describes semantic web server developed in the past. 2) It's not clear how this submission links to modeling the southern oscillation index. Contains links to a blog, github but the links are dead or old. 3) No Application Development or codes provided."** I spent about an hour or two writing a submission, which I figured was worth a gamble to perhaps get some broader recognition for the work. The$25K prize they were offering is peanuts and really embarrassing for what they offered in exchange for demanding nearly shrink-wrapped software with code and user's manuals. I don't think they get that open-source collaboration is the way problems will get solved ...
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I don’t think they get that open-source collaboration is the way problems will get solved …

Sounds like the Earth Science Data Challenge was closed software, interesting -I hadnt paid much attention to that when looking at the challenge.

Comment Source:>I don’t think they get that open-source collaboration is the way problems will get solved … Sounds like the Earth Science Data Challenge was closed software, interesting -I hadnt paid much attention to that when looking at the challenge.
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I guess my point is that they are not interested in actually working collaboratively. I have lots of code in a github location but I ask people to provide me with a github user name so that they can gain access to it. I did that with my challenge submission, yet they never contacted me for access, instead saying it was "dead" or "old". Same with the blog in terms of not following up, as I coincidentally had a problem with my web-hosting two nights ago, where it went out of commission for several hours after I tried to empty my spam folder (as I now have learned emptying a spam folder of 10,000 comments can overrun a server when the query limit is 7500 per hour -- each removal is a query apparently!). Stayed up until 3AM with someone from the Indian subcontinent trying to fix that problem!

Finally, the challenge recommends using Amazon cloud hosting for the applications since that is the direction of NASA's future vision. As it turns out, I did submit using my app hosted on an Amazon cloud. Yet, I am not using the Amazon math-intensive computing instance for doing the computations, preferring instead to use the cheaper general-purpose instance which is about 2% to 5% of the hosting cost. It is not that the general-purpose cloud is much slower, but the issue it has is that it will just abort a running web server application if it detects that it is using too many compute cycles. I know I can fix that by setting up a restart, but the problem is that if that goes haywire and you get too many running instances, then Amazon will charge you for running multiple instances! In my submission I mentioned that issue, and recommended that they should also check an alternate web server which is hosted on one of my PCs, but they never responded to that problem either.

In my opinion, this "Innocentive Challenge" approach is a bit misguided. They are trying to take advantage of submitters, much like a KickStarter or PledgeMusic campaign would, but in this case the submitters have nothing guaranteed in return. At least by contributing money to a band, you can get some music from it in return. What I got form this in return was nothing, and am glad I only invested a few hours.

Comment Source:I guess my point is that they are not interested in actually working collaboratively. I have lots of code in a github location but I ask people to provide me with a github user name so that they can gain access to it. I did that with my challenge submission, yet they never contacted me for access, instead saying it was "dead" or "old". Same with the blog in terms of not following up, as I coincidentally had a problem with my web-hosting two nights ago, where it went out of commission for several hours after I tried to empty my spam folder (as I now have learned emptying a spam folder of 10,000 comments can overrun a server when the query limit is 7500 per hour -- each removal is a query apparently!). Stayed up until 3AM with someone from the Indian subcontinent trying to fix that problem! Finally, the challenge recommends using Amazon cloud hosting for the applications since that is the direction of NASA's future vision. As it turns out, I did submit using my app hosted on an Amazon cloud. Yet, I am not using the Amazon math-intensive computing instance for doing the computations, preferring instead to use the cheaper general-purpose instance which is about 2% to 5% of the hosting cost. It is not that the general-purpose cloud is much slower, but the issue it has is that it will just **abort** a running web server application if it detects that it is using too many compute cycles. I know I can fix that by setting up a restart, but the problem is that if that goes haywire and you get too many running instances, then Amazon will charge you for running multiple instances! In my submission I mentioned that issue, and recommended that they should also check an alternate web server which is hosted on one of my PCs, but they never responded to that problem either. In my opinion, this "Innocentive Challenge" approach is a bit misguided. They are trying to take advantage of submitters, much like a KickStarter or PledgeMusic campaign would, but in this case the submitters have nothing guaranteed in return. At least by contributing money to a band, you can get some music from it in return. What I got form this in return was nothing, and am glad I only invested a few hours.
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edited November 2014

Paul read Grapes of Wrath and note the California Peach farmer handouts looking for harvesters, you will see what NASA is going, it is a California tradition :)

You are welcome to host on our servers if you want disaster recovery and IT staff that are in USA and you could call their cells :) heh heh heh, of course gratis

Dara

Comment Source:Paul read Grapes of Wrath and note the California Peach farmer handouts looking for harvesters, you will see what NASA is going, it is a California tradition :) You are welcome to host on our servers if you want disaster recovery and IT staff that are in USA and you could call their cells :) heh heh heh, of course gratis Dara
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on our servers if you want disaster recovery and IT staff that are in USA

Dara I thought you were in Dungaravan.

Comment Source:>on our servers if you want disaster recovery and IT staff that are in USA Dara I thought you were in Dungaravan.
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Yes I am a multi-national, live in North America part-time and reside in Ireland where our farm is. But all my IT infrastructure is in USA.

Comment Source:Yes I am a multi-national, live in North America part-time and reside in Ireland where our farm is. But all my IT infrastructure is in USA.