The Conversation

Tomnod Website Crowdsources Satellite Images to Search for Malaysia Airplane

Digitalglobe, a Colorado firm with a vast commercial satellite network, is posting images online for the public assist in the search for missing Malaysia flight 370.  The site has seen so much interest in the project that the website has crashed. 

"This is a real needle-in-the-haystack problem, except the haystack is in the middle of the ocean," Luke Barrington of DigitalGlobe told CNN affiliate KMGH. "I will ask you to mark anything that looks interesting, any signs of wreckage or life rafts.

In many cases, the areas covered are so large, or the things we're looking for are so hard to find, that without the help of hundreds of thousands of people online, we'd never be able to find them," Barrington said.

The company also helped out with images from the Typhoon in the Phillipines.  Volunteers tagged "more than 60,000 objects of interest from satellite photos. The information was forwarded to emergency responders, the firm said."


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