Fascinating - Foldit (the protein folding game) players are live-streaming their gameplay (one can watch recordings obviously too) & giving tips to other users how to use the game, different controls, etc.
We could have something like that with finding stalls too ! Doesn’t strictly have to be live, obviously, but wouldn’t it be amazing if more experienced players ( @gcalkins, @caprarom, @MikeLandau, others?!) would do such mini tutorials every now and then, for less experienced players to learn from?!
I’m not really sure what I would do in the tutorial. The great thing about stall catchers is that it’s so easy to learn how to do it. I’m not sure what I would say in the tutorial because it’s so easy to do, but I guess I could try and think of something. I’m somewhat embarrassed say that stall catchers is one of the only citizen science tasks that I am successful at. I tried to do eye wire a couple of times, but I just couldn’t get it. I couldn’t figure out what to do, and I just don’t have the hand eye coordination necessary to do any task that requires delicate tracing like that. That’s one of things that I really like about stall catchers is that it doesn’t require any fine motor coordination in order to be able to do it. Seems like all these other tasks including this folding thing require a fair amount of knowledge, and skill in order to be able to do it. I was totally lost in the folding video, or whatever this thing is.
The other problem is that live streaming might be beyond my capability. I’m not very technological when it comes to computers, and I have absolutely no idea how to live stream.
With all that said, I might be willing to give it a try, but like I said, stall catchers is so easy to learn, I’m really not sure what I would say in a tutorial.
I think it would be better to have tutorials that focus on things like, for extremely difficult blood vessels where it’s really difficult to see the stall, are there some telltale signs that a stall might be present? For example, it seems like in some movies where the resolution is really bad, stalls look like streaks, or even sometimes blobs, instead of their usual rectangular shape, and it would be good to have a tutorial that would point out these kinds of exceptions to the rule so to speak.
As a side note, I use a speech dictation system to write all my messages, so there may be some recognition errors in this message. If there are some recognition errors that I missed, please let me know, and I will clarify anything that you don’t understand about the message.
That’s exactly what we’ve been thinking too - catchers could teach other catchers about those in these mini tutorials!
For live streaming, this website (that the Foldit player used) seems to be handy for that: https://go.twitch.tv/, and there’s also Facebook & Youtube live streaming. But as I say - it absolutely doesn’t have to be a live video, could be a recorded mini-tutorial too !
Thanks much for your input @MikeLandau, as always! It’s nice to hear that Stall Catchers is going well for you - compared with other citizen science projects - as it is the same for me too ! I don’t have the patience to learn all the controls in Foldit (although I do have a background in molecular biology & have used it, and the Eterna game, in class a few times… I let the students do all the work though! ), and same with Eyewire - there’s too much going on in there for me. I kinda liked Phylo, the sequence alignment game, but somehow I am not too good at puzzles like that (again, despite having a scientific background in that kind of thing). And stardust@home… omg - never passed the tutorial Anyhow…
My initial reaction was very similar to Mike L.'s (including my own lack of technological proficiency). The stall-catcher’s task is much less complex than that for folding proteins. The question did prompt me to rummage around a bit, and I found, then viewed for the first time, the “Vessel examples” under the [Help] menu. Those are rather nicely done. I would think the same could be done for more difficult vessels if needed - perhaps a separate link to “Challenging vessels.” Maybe also show a few examples of vessels that should be flagged or problems one might encounter, e.g., when too much fluorescence causes ‘white-out’ conditions.
I’m trying not to take umbrage at Egle’s comment on the stardust@home tutorial test (being an active duster for over eleven years and counting). I recall how ridiculously impossible stall-catching appeared to be when I was first introduced to it (prior to the alpha & beta testing) - like those Cornell folks and their associates must be crazy! Turns out they were not crazy at all, but rather fine people as a matter of fact. I’m privileged to be a part of this community. Mike C.