Re: New 100 cm's flooding the site?
Let’s first try to assume goodwill. In no way is the Stardust@home team purposely trying to ignore you, annoy you, or devalue you in any way. We are all keenly aware of your importance to this project. (In fact, I’m currently researching a way we can more officially recognize the Top 50 dusters from past search phases.) But there are some things you must try and understand.
For one, we’re all extremely busy. I for example am on at least eight other projects and am budgeted for a mere 5% time on Stardust at best. I try to get to these forums as much as I can, but sometimes I can only do that once a week. Actually, the funding source that has allowed me to be part of this project runs out this month, and if new funding cannot be found, it’s quite possible these forums will get even less attention.
I also recognize that we had originally stated that Phase 3 was going to be about new movies, and it was! But a turn of events (mainly the discovery of Orion’s unique composition) necessitated a new direction. However, we consider the timing a fortunate occurrence and it made Phase 3 something truly different from the previous searches.
We also know that many of you have the skills to find midnight tracks, but could you imagine what it would sound like in the scientific literature if we had mentioned that our search image and training were completely wrong, yet we didn’t re-train our team or re-examine our samples? It just wouldn’t fly, and therefore we MUST not only re-search old movies, but we also need to make sure all dusters are trained properly on what we are looking for.
Nevertheless, we completely understand your desire to search new movies and are making every effort to get those in the system as soon as possible. As Dr. Spencer (a truly dedicated and valued duster) has already pointed out, we’ve uploaded some already. But regardless, you will see old movies too, it simply can’t be avoided. And frankly, it was simply easier to start off by uploading old movies, since we already had them. Sometimes we forget what regular dusting is like, and so thanks for bringing to our attention again your desire and reasoning for wanting new movies.
Dr. Westphal has taken the time to address your concerns as well, and has posted an update in the blog here (which I’ve also pasted below). As he says, please bear with us. As John notes, our actions are driven by the need to do the science right, even if it’s tedious. After that, we do what we can with the resources we have, which are often not much.
Thank you for your understanding. Your value to this project is undeniable and we’d hate to lose you. But there are sound reasons for the choices we make even at the risk of being dull.
PS – we acknowledge all dusters since at one time or another they contributed.
Phase I movies…
Many of you have noticed that we have been serving up older, Phase I movies for a few days. Although we know that this may have been frustrating to see familiar movies, it was important, to be sure that we were not missing some “midnight” tracks in the Phase I dataset. (We also know that many of you have the skills to find midnight tracks, but we need to reach the entire dusting audience and make sure all the old movies were looked at as well.) This is because the original data were viewed with calibration movies that, as you know, did not resemble midnight tracks. Thank you for your patience. It is very important that we identify every one of the midnight tracks. We may do this again for a few days at a time from time to time, or we may mix in older movies with new in order to determine detection efficiencies as a function of time. Please bear with us! Stardust@home is not the bottleneck in our overall ISPE project.
We have now switched back to serving up the newer movies. We are also in the process of uploading new scan data to the server. We will post to this blog when we have new movies up and available.
Thank you for your help!