Tracking Whale Sharks? There’s an App for that.

by | Jul 20, 2011 | Shark Week, Technology | 1 comment

In a testament to the incredible amount of computing power now available to non-commercial organizations these days, ECOCEAN has started a website that allows amateurs to upload photos of whale sharks to their system and almost instantly view data on that exact shark.  The system makes use of a technology developed by NASA for use with the Hubble Telescope.  According to the organization, the spots on whale sharks can be used to uniquely identify each shark, and the supercomputer behind it can very quickly determine if the pattern is a match for any other photos in the database.  This system is being adapted for use on other species and might one day prove useful in storing information on different coral morphs and species.  “Citizen Science” as it is referred to by National Geographic will undoubtedly prove to be yet another tool for learning more about biological patterns and assist with conservation activities.

  • Josh Saul

    Josh Saul is a technology consultant for large global banks. He has been involved in the aquarium hobby for 20 years and has been SCUBA diving for more than 30.

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1 Comment

  1. lfsmarineguy

    So if I understand this correctly, we won’t have to use the name “Gorilla Nipples” anymore? We can just use a picture and a scientific name… AMAZING!


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