Birding Meets Technology

As a former birder, I love the idea of the this project — but I have to point out that birders call it birding, not birdwatching.

Maybe I’ll leave CONE on my monitor at home when I’m gone, to keep the cats entertained.  Tho I’m afraid I’ll come home to find the monitor toppled over, with scratch marks.

Announcing: CONE Sutro Forest: Opening 23 April 2007

The Latest Massively Multiplayer Online Game? Birdwatching.

CONE Sutro Forest allows players to earn points by taking live photos and classifying wild birds. CONE Sutro Forest (CONE-SF) combines a remotely controllable robotic pan-tilt-zoom video camera with live streaming video, image database, and point system.

Conceived by Ken Goldberg, artist and professor of engineering at UC Berkeley, and Dez Song, professor of computer science at Texas A&M, and funded by the National Science Foundation, CONE-SF automatically computes the optimal camera viewpoint that satisfies dozens or hundreds of simultaneous players, including both experts and amateurs. Managing large communities is the specialty of craigslist founder Craig Newmark, who will host the camera from his San Francisco residence overlooking the Sutro Forest. All photos on this page were taken by him.

CONE-SF is free and open to the public. To play, visit:

[However, my efforts to register are not working — it registers me, then refused to recognize my pwd; resetting pwd doesn’t work, either.]

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