[(optional) insert lame joke about proper attribution]
Anyway, that's in the past now. Click here to check out more images of this beautiful lacewing: http://orionmystery.blogspot.com/2012/08/semachrysa-jade-new...
I hope this only encourages you to take more photographs, and one day soon you'll have a new species named after you!
This observation purely emerges from my experience.
I find North Americans incredibly opportunistic in registering patents. A friend that does network support outsourcing was complaining that their (American) boss was setting targets on number of patents registered by their support gig.
My blog entry on this new species is here: http://orionmystery.blogspot.com/2012/08/semachrysa-jade-new...
You can find my flickr page from there :)
> He also found a matching specimen that had been sitting in the museum's collection, unclassified, for decades.
Winterton SL, Guek HP, Brooks SJ
A charismatic new species of green lacewing discovered
in Malaysia (Neuroptera, Chrysopidae): the confluence
of citizen scientist, online image database and
ZooKeys 2012; 214: 1–11. doi: 10.3897/zookeys.214.3220
When has the exitement for discovery got so casual?
When we realized that the number of species on the planet is large enough to give up on any hope of ever cataloging them all.
I wonder if a machine learning algorithm could spot new species from flickr photos...
You have to be careful with those things. My alma mater has a tale of a student 7 or 8 years ago who built a neural net to detect lizards in photos. He fed the system a bunch of pictures to teach it what lizards look like. When it came time to test he got remarkable results: it was 100% effective in positively identifying lizards. Then he fed it a picture of empty ground and the net happily confirmed that this picture contained a lizard as well! Turns out, if all of your training data is positive the computer just learns "everything is a lizard".
Of course, real-life researchers would never dare make such a mistake but this tale always amuses me so I couldn't resist :)
My university background is in Machine Learning. Sounds like this person did not understand ML. Was he new at this? You should learn about false positives, false negatives and plotting ROC curves from the first experiments with simple artificial random point cloud datasets (toy problems) before you even bother stepping up to image recognition.
When a ML researcher gets a 100% accuracy rate, they go look for the bug in their program, not think "oh awesome, it must be very good then"--it's a bit of an embarassing mistake if it turns out it's because your training set only contains examples for one of your two classes ("has a lizard" vs "does not have a lizard").
I mentioned he was a student for a reason. What do you think? This was a project for a class and even still he immediately recognised the error when he tested it.
Similar to as I mentioned in reply to a child comment, you kind of sound like someone chastising a physicist for dropping a negative somewhere in their calculations. It doesn't betray a fundamental lack of understanding such that they should be lectured to go back to first grade and learn how to do arithmetic; it just demonstrates that at some point they were acting somewhat careless in what they were doing.
And, yes, it is a bit of an embarrassing mistake. That's what makes it such a fun story!
But this was a lacewing with an unusual colouration and thousands of new insect species are discovered every year. If biologists and museums got all worked up and dropped everything they were doing over each one, they'd never have the time or money to do anything else.
"Backed by National Geographic, Project Noah is mobilizing a new generation of nature explorers and helping people from around the world appreciate their local wildlife. Our community is harnessing the power and popularity of new mobile technologies to collect important ecological data and help preserve global biodiversity."
It's odd because it makes an insect that otherwise is very camouflaged much more noticeable. This makes me wonder if it's biomimicry of another dangerous/poisonous/distasteful local insect.
More than likely, it's a sexual display/indicator without any "practical" purpose related to survival. Like a peacock's tail. If you're really interested in evolutionary biology, read Darwin's original work. You'll be surprised to learn that most adaptations have little to do with survival.
But this national geographic magazine seems to doubt that theory:
But then again, the "original experiments behind the peppered moth story" were known to have "widely acknowledged flaws."
All the scientist did was go, "Compare to any other lacewings we have on record, if no match, new species. Presto, new species give me my accolades" - the bug should have been named after Guek not Winterton's daughter.
Which do you think is more corrupt, a country like the US that has imprisoned governors and impeached presidents, or a country which has never questioned its leaders?
What is it, exactly, that's getting in your craw?
It's a trivial little story. The thing that got me to comment here was the fact that it (the new species) wasn't named after the photographer; that's all. But I am really surprised to see people questioning the veracity of the story which is so insignificant (there are 100s of new species being discovered all the time; it's not like they found Sasquatch or something), and the baffling assertion that it's got something to do with the management at Flickr.... really?!?!?