Do You Have A Few Minutes?

Do You Have A Few Minutes?

We have created a fun and quick way for users to identify which category best describes an item in our database and we are calling it our “Quick Categorization” module. We like to think of it as a game! You earn points for each item categorized and can see how your point total ranks amongst other users. You can even earn badges – who doesn’t like badges?

Our goal is to categorize all 61000+ items in our database. Think categorizing 61K items is impossible? Think again! On average, a single “categorization” takes 25s. While it would take a single person nearly 53 days to complete the task, we don’t want one person doing this, where are the good statistical practices in that? We would like the entire community to get involved.

If 500 people were to use the module, it would only take 2.5 hours to categorize the entire database. That is a 500 fold improvement – when were you last involved in a project that had a 500 fold improvement?

While we are not asking you to spend 2.5 hours with our module - unless you are stuck at the airport with nothing else to do - we are encouraging you to spend a few minutes with it. Have time on the bus or train? Click away. Give us a few clicks while you are waiting for a seminar to start. Use the module to fill the gaps in your day where there isn’t enough time to start another reaction, or set up another run, or those 5 minute between meetings where you really can’t get much done.

How does this work, you ask? Go to and click “Begin Classifying”. You will be presented with the title and abstract of a paper, no author or journal information will be given - to keep you from feeling biased about which category an item might belong in. Look over the title and abstract and choose which category the paper best fits into. There is an “Other” option, because we understand that sometimes a paper just doesn’t fit in any of the categories, feel free to use this “Other” category or just “Skip” the paper altogether.

When you click the main category - Catalysis, Functioning Module, or Light Management - a second level is presented. Again, feel free to use the “Other” category or just “Skip”, your first click on the general category was registered so no information will be lost. Another item will be randomly chosen for you and will appear after you click through the second level. Once three users have virtually agreed on the category of an item it is labeled accordingly and taken out of circulation.

A single categorization takes ~25 seconds. You could have done at least 3 categorizations in the time it took to read this post - and you didn’t get any points for reading this post.


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