Galaxy Zoo Talk

#2 How do I: A Talk Tutorial

  • Capella05 by Capella05 moderator

    In the second of the series, I thought we would go back to basics and write a tutorial on how to make your way around talk. At the same time I will explain how to use some of the features.

    Please note: I have created this thread from scratch, using my experience as a user. This is in no ways an 'Official Zooniverse' tutorial - so I would appreciate it, if you could at least notify me (via PM) before distributing the link - thanks!

    If you are a seasoned user, you can tune off now ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

    In this thread you will learn (in no particular order) :

    • How to create / edit discussions (known as Threads on the old Forum)
    • Add comments / use the recents tab
    • Create / edit and add items to collections
    • Send PMโ€™s and edit your Zooniverse profile
    • Follow threads and comments
    • Use the search functionality
    • Find your way around your Talk profile.


    Before I start one final important notice about classifying: 
    Always classify the image directly at the center, and ***never*** try to avoid a really hard image. 
    It does not matter if you can't make heads or tails out of it- just try your best.  
    We will learn more from the jumbles of classifications than if it was never classified :-)


  • Capella05 by Capella05 moderator

    Step 1: Navigating to Talk.

    It may seem a bit odd discussing this when you are already here ๐Ÿ˜ƒ but this tutorial will also be distributed by more traditional means.

    There are two ways that you can navigate to Talk:

    The first is by selecting the โ€˜Talkโ€™ hyperlink from the Galaxy Zoo homepage

    enter image description here

    The second is from the image you have just classified over on Galaxy Zoo Classify.

    Each time you classify an object you are given the option to discuss it, when you select this button you are taken to the comment section of Talk for that particular object.

    enter image description here

    I will discuss the comment section in greater detail later in the tutorial, for now we will deal with the Galaxy Zoo landing page.


  • Capella05 by Capella05 moderator

    Step 2: The Landing Page

    enter image description here

    The landing Page is made up of several sections, namely:

    1. The featured discussions. These are similar to stickied topics on the old forum. This section is dynamic and the content will change depending on which discussion board you are visiting.
    2. The most recent images that have been commented on. These can be refreshed by selecting the Talk logo or hitting the refresh key on your browser.
    3. The Top Nav bar
    4. Trending Hashtags
    5. The users that are currently logged on.
    6. The most recent responses on the discussion boards / collections etcโ€ฆ

    The top Nav bar:

    enter image description here

    This is the main navigation tool whereby you can navigate around Talk, this is a screenshot from my Navbar โ€“ the Moderator option will not be available to you, but you are not missing out on much ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

    I will go into greater detail on the individual functionality later, this is just a quick guide to get you started.

    1. Galaxy Zoo Talk logo, irrespective of where you are on talk,clicking the logo will take you back to the Landing page.
    2. Following Tab: Comments and Discussions that you have chosen to follow can be easily accessed here.
    3. Recents Tab: Similar to the main content block on the landing / home page.
    4. Discussion Tab: To navigate to the discussion boards, click here.
    5. Search Tab: Allows you to search the site.
    6. Profile: To access your PMโ€™s and view the most recent comments and posts you have made on the site. At the bottom you will find the Collections you have made.
    7. PM notification โ€“ BTW, If you have a PM notification, but no unread PMโ€™s in your inbox, donโ€™t worry! Your PM has not gone missing - Talk just didnโ€™t register that you had read a previous PM ๐Ÿ˜ƒ


  • Capella05 by Capella05 moderator

    Step 3: Image comments and the Recents Tab

    Select an object from the recent tab by clicking on it, you should be presented with the following:

    enter image description here

    This is the image / object page. All comments and discussions linked to this image will be displayed here. The comments are directly below the image, the discussions are on the right (more on Discussions later).
    Any-time the image ID (E.g. AGZ0001gdg) is referenced anywhere on Talk a link will be created on the right hand side.

    Lets start off with the comments section.

    The comments are displayed in chronological order (i.e. the most recent comment is displayed first). Try to get into the habit of checking to see if other users have entered any comments, you can do this by scrolling down. If you have a question about the object you classified, you may find that another user has had a similar query that has already been answered by one of the Moderators / Scientists ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

    We love answering questions, so when in doubt, please do enter one! To help us find your question, I would suggest putting a ? at the beginning of your comment.

    It is important to note that only 140 characters can be entered, so in many respects it is similar to Twitter. Another similarity is the use of hash tagging - once you have classified a particularly interesting object, you may want to tag it. This can be done by entering a # followed by the tag (no spaces or the hashtag will break!)

    Edited to add: for Apple users use Alt/ยฃ to create a hashtag (many thanks to @GeoffRoynon for pointing this out ๐Ÿ˜ƒ )

    For example: For the image above I may wish to enter the following tags: #spiral #bar #multiple_arms

    More info on hash tagging can be found in this discussion.


  • Capella05 by Capella05 moderator

    Step 3: Create a collection. Add / edit Items within you collection.

    This is a useful feature on Talk where you can collect objects of a particular type and group them together. Depending on what project you are working on, there will be a few generic collections that are set-up for all users and are linked to your individual profile.

    To create a new collection:

    There are 2 ways of going about this: the first is from your profile page, the second (and the one you are most likely to use) is from the object page. I am only going to describe the 2nd method, as I will briefly cover the first when we look at the profile page in greater detail.

    Navigate to object page of the image you would like to add to a collection.

    Look in the top left hand corner of the image โ€“ A button with โ€˜Collectโ€™ should be visible. Select it.

    You will now be given the option to add to an existing collection, or to start a new one.

    Select "Start a new collection".

    Give your collection a name (eg. โ€œBulgeless AGN galaxiesโ€, โ€œIrregularsโ€ etcโ€ฆ) and a description and save it.

    Viola! You have created your first collection!

    You collection will now be displayed along with all the individual images contained within the collection - at the moment there is only one! As you can see it is possible to add comments, hash tags ect... Any comments entered here will be saved within the collection, not on the object page.

    It is important to point out that your collection will be visible to everyone, along with any comments you have added to individual images.

    Adding an image to an existing collection:

    Whenever you want to add an item to the collection just click the 'Collect' button in the top left of the image, and select the collection you wish to add the object to and save. If you so wish, you can add an item to multiple collections, just repeat the previous action.

    Managing your collection:

    There comes a point when you might want to review your collection and remove objects and update comments. If you are not already within your collection, the easiest way to navigate to it, it from the Profile page. On the Top Nav bar, click on Profile. Look on the right hand side, close to the bottom of the page, you will see a section marked as 'My Collections'.

    Select the collection, you wish to manage.

    enter image description here

    Now select the 'Edit' hyperlink, found next to your avatar.

    Your collection name and description can be updated on the left. Images can be removed from the collection by clicking the corresponding 'x' in the top right corner. Remember to save your changes ๐Ÿ˜ƒ


  • Capella05 by Capella05 moderator

    Step 4: Lets start a Discussion!

    Limiting your comments / questions to just a 140 character can be so frustrating! So, this is where the discussion boards come in ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

    There are two different types of Discussions you can create. One that is related or linked to a particular image, the other is a discussion that is independent of any image.

    It is important to make the distinction between the two, as we want to try to prevent irrelevant discussions being linked to a particular image ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

    Creating a linked discussion from the Object / Image page:

    enter image description here

    This is the same image that I used earlier in the tutorial to explain the 'Recents' tab. Let us now concentrate our attention to the right hand side of the image. We can see a sampling of the various "Collections" that this image has been added to, along with all the "Hash tags" that volunteers have added in the comment section.

    Below that, we have the 3 main boards - Namely:

    • Help
    • Science
    • Chat

    It can be a bit confusing trying to decide what "Board" to post in, but if you have a question about a particular object that you have classified, I would suggest selecting the "Help" section.

    enter image description here

    I will now select the "Create a New Post" button.

    enter image description here

    Enter a title for the discussion, along with the content and save.

    Excellent! We have just created this discussion ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

    Nice to know: any discussion created from the object / image page will always appear in the relevant 'The Objects" sub-board.

    Creating a independent discussion from the Top Nav:

    As the title suggest, navigate to the "Discussion Boards" via the top navigation.

    Once again we will be presented with the 3 main boards, along with all the sub boards. Even for us seasoned users, it can be a bit difficult trying to decide where to create a thread, so this is my personal description of all the boards (Other Mods / Scientists, please PM me with corrections ๐Ÿ˜ƒ ) :

    • Help
      • Help ( Bugs, Interface issues, browser incompatibility etc... )
      • The Objects (Help / questions classifying the images)
    • Science
      • Science (Hard Science that is related to Galaxies / Galaxy Zoo)
      • Science powered by Citizens (An area for our serious citizen scientist to work, post their musings etc...)
      • The Objects (Fancy starting up a scientific debate WRT a particular object? This is the place to do it ๐Ÿ˜ƒ )
    • Chat
      • Chat (Anything that takes your fancy! I am particularly fond of cats ๐Ÿ˜‰ )
      • Talk users astronomy pictures (wether your are keen astrophotographer or just starting out, post your pics here!)
      • The Objects (Non - science related discussions WRT the images - I love the artistic ones!)

    Follow the same instructions from above to create a discussion,one thing you may notice you now have several formatting options available. They should be fairly self explanatory (If you need help PM me) - edited to add: after several questions I will be adding a FAQ to the end of the tutorial on how to post pictures, create hyperlinks etc...

    Here is another excellent thread by vrooje (Scientist / Admin / Brooke ) with more formatting options ๐Ÿ˜ƒ


  • Capella05 by Capella05 moderator

    Step 5: Sending / Reading PM's

    A very important aspect of any online board - the ability to communicate with other Volunteers privately!

    In Talk v2 - the functionality of PM'ing is limited to sending and receiving messages. Additional functionality will be introduced in future releases.

    enter image description here

    This is the notification area - I will warn you, it can occasionally be a bit buggy!

    To read your PM's click on the envelope or the 'Profile' hyperlink.

    Your inbox will be displayed on the left hand side, To read a message all you have to do is click on it! It will be displayed on the right.

    Sending a PM is fairly self-explanatory - select the person you are sending a message to and type ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

    Important notes:

    • If you receive offensive or unsolicited PM please notify a Moderator or Admin.
    • It is now possible to delete PM, but please remember that if you select delete it will remove the entire 'string' of PM's.
    • No, we are unable to send a PM to multiple users ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

    All of these shortcoming will be dealt with in the next version of talk ๐Ÿ˜ƒ


  • Capella05 by Capella05 moderator

    Step 6: Following a Object / Discussion / Collection

    When you have come across a particularly interesting discussion or image, you way wish to 'follow it' ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

    This is a talk feature that make it easy to navigate to topics that you have shown an interest in.

    To follow a object / comment on the Image Page:

    enter image description here

    In the top right you will have a 'follow / followed' button - click on it. The screenshot is showing a image I have previously followed ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

    From a Discussion:

    enter image description here

    To view the discussions, images or collections you have followed - select the 'Following' hyperlink on the Top Nav menu.

    enter image description here

    Just select the object / discussion that you wish to catch up on. If you wish to 'unfollow' a post, just select the unfollow button.


  • Capella05 by Capella05 moderator

    Step 7: Using the Search page.

    Navigate to the Search page by using the top nav bar.

    To begin with, we are just going to enter a search word, in this case 'asteroid', and hit the 'Search' button. I have found that you get better results if you only enter a single keyword.

    It may take a minute or two but all the search results pertaining to asteroids will now be displayed.

    Looking at the image above, we can see that we got a whopping 1,041 hits!

    On the right hand side we have the results, and on the left a breakdown of where the keyword was found. Lets us concentrate on the left hand side for a moment.

    There are 3 tiers available for us to try and refine our search- namely:

    • Type (The location the keyword was found. It will either be a object comment, a discussion or mentioned in a collection)
    • Category (If it was a discusion, the board on which it was mentioned on.)
    • Tags (Other hash tags that are associated with the object )

    Lets us try to refine the search by only selecting a 'Type' in this case 'objects'.

    You can see the results have now decreased to 916 objects.

    I think it is important to point out that you can only select a 'Category' if you have selected the type 'Discussion'.

    We could try to further refine our search by selecting associated hashtags. This will be more useful when searching for objects that have several features. Let us try to do a search for objects that are edge on galaxies with dustlanes.

    A final note on the search page, it can be a bit buggy. This will be attended too in the new version of Talk due next year. Also, the the last updated date , is in fact the first date the keyword you searched for was associated with the discussion / object / collection. Another hint - if you are searching for something in particular use the most unusual keyword, and then refine it with general hash tags.


  • Capella05 by Capella05 moderator

    Step 8: Managing your Zooniverse profile

    This is where you can change your avatar, manage your subscriptions, update your email / password, and change your details for future publications (where applicable).

    There are two ways to navigate there, either click on your profile picture on Talk, or go to the Zooniverse Home page.

    You will need to sign in.

    If you have forgotten your email / password, still select this option! You will have to option to change them.

    Once you are logged on, select your user name, and then 'Account'.

    You will now have the following options available:

    I think the rest is self explanatory, and if I posted any more screenshots of my profile, all sense of mystery would dissapear!

    Have fun using Talk, and if you have any questions please PM me!