[Mycology] Mushroom Observer

Darvin DeShazer via mycology%40net.bio.net (by muscaria from pacbell.net)
Thu Jul 31 00:16:37 EST 2008

An Invitation to Work Together on MushroomObserver.org

Are you interested in helping to create a worldwide mushroom database?
Would you like to participate in a mushroom related website that
allows anyone to contribute their own mushroom photos, participate in
conversation about those contributions, and search the site for photos
and comments?

There are many mushroom related sites out there and even more mushroom
related discussion happening on various mailing lists, chats etc.
Unfortunately, mailing lists and their attachments are transitory.
Personal and even amateur group websites are hard to keep track of or
search consistently and few allow general participation. Sites hosted
on third-party websites like yahoo groups are at risk of getting
unplugged or co-opted in someway that may not be in keeping with the
original intent of the site or simply falling into the dustbin of
neglected websites.

The community supporting the MushroomObserver.org website would like
to invite all interested parties to get involved in creating a common
on-line meeting ground for mushroom enthusiasts. It makes sense to
have one common site to compare photos and get feedback from others.
We would be happy, with your help, to shape MushroomObserver.org towards
better achieving that goal. Much of the ground work is already done.

- Anyone can add their own images of mushrooms.
- Anyone can make a comment or suggest a new name for any mushroom
- Anyone can contribute to a shared database of mushroom descriptions.
- Anyone can make species lists for a location, event or any other
- Anyone can generate a list of fungi found by clicking the check boxes.
- Anyone can compare all photos of the same species.
- Anyone can vote on any species name.
- Anyone can see a location map of where the collection was made.
- Anyone can get the full source code for the website and participate
in its development.
- There are no financial hooks.

Conceptually the site is similar to Wikipedia, but with an emphasis on
recording individual records of people finding and identifying
mushrooms. At the moment (July 2008) there are over 350 registered
users and more the 15,000 images from all over the world.

Mushroom Observer is not intended to replace the websites for existing
mushroom groups. These serve a very valuable purpose of providing a
common place for people in a given area who know each other to
organize local events and share their local experience. Mushroom
Observer strives to complement such sites by providing a larger
context for these groups to share and record their discoveries in a
lasting way, and compare their findings with findings from other
similar groups. It is a living mushroom field guide on the web which
we are all building together.

We hope you can join us!

Darvin DeShazer & Nathan Wilson

PS - Apologies if you are receiving this multiple times or if you are
already aware of (and hopefully participating in) Mushroom Observer.
With all the diverse groups out there we decided it would make sense to
reach out and contact everyone at once. Also feel free to edit & publish
this in any appropriate newsletter.


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