Washington, July 20 (IANS) NASA has launched an online toolkit to make it easier for users to find, analyse and utilise the most relevant satellite data for their research, business projects or conservation efforts.
The "Remote Sensing Toolkit" provides a simple system that quickly identifies relevant sources based on user input, NASA said in a statement on Thursday.
The toolkit is designed to help users search for data, as well as ready-to-use tools and code to build new tools.
"This new tool makes finding and using NASA satellite data easier than ever before, and we hope it sparks innovation among the entrepreneurial community and leads to further commercialisation of NASA technology and benefits people across the world," said Daniel Lockney, NASA's Technology Transfer programme executive.
"Our mission to bring NASA technology down to Earth is expanding with the release of this remote sensing toolkit," Lockney said.
Through its constellation of Earth observation satellites, NASA collects petabytes of data each year.
The variety of open source tools created to access, analyse and utilise the data from these satellites is familiar to millions of science users, but accessing and utilising this data remains daunting for many potential commercial users.
For example, NASA's remote-sensing data and tools are spread out across dozens of sites.
The NASA Technology Transfer programme reviewed more than 50 websites and found that no source provided a comprehensive collection of information or a single access point to begin a search.
This prompted the US space agency to introduce the Remote Sensing Toolkit.
"Remote Sensing Toolkit will help grow the number of users who put NASA's free and open data archive to work for people," said Kevin Murphy of NASA's Earth Science Division in Washington.
New Delhi, July 20 (IANS) Hauled up second time by the government on its failure to check the spread of fake and provocative content on its platform amid growing lynching episodes, the Facebook-owned platform on Friday said it is launching a test to limit message forwarding to five chats that will apply to its users in India.
In its second notice on Thursday, the Ministry of Electronics and IT (MeitY) took a tough stand, asking WhatsApp to come out with more effective solutions that can bring in accountability and facilitate enforcement of law in addition to their efforts towards labelling forwards and identifying fake news.
"It has been conveyed to them in unmistakable terms that it is a very serious issue which deserves a more sensitive response," MeitY said in the notice.
WhatsApp reacted: "In India, where people forward more messages, photos, and videos than any other country in the world, we'll also test a lower limit of 5 chats at once.
"We will also remove the quick forward button next to media messages," WhatsApp said in a statement.
The test, once comes to practice, will curtail WhatsApp's services for over 200 million users in India. Globally, the company allows users to forward messages for up to 20 chats (either individuals or groups).
WhatsApp said that with new changes, which it will continue to evaluate, "will help keep WhatsApp the way it was designed to be: a private messaging app".
"We are deeply committed to your safety and privacy which is why WhatsApp is end-to-end encrypted, and we'll continue to improve our app with features like this one," it added.
In its first reply to the IT Ministry, WhatsApp said the company is "horrified" by terrible acts of violence.
The IT Ministry had asked WhatsApp to ensure that the platform is not used for malafide activities over the growing instances of lynching of innocent people owing to large number of irresponsible messages filled with rumours being circulated on its platform.
The mobile messiging service listed several measures -- including labelling Forwarding messages -- in its first reply to control the spread of misinformation and abuse on its platform but failed to meet the requirements from the IT Ministry.
Several people have lost their lives in the past one year by lynch mobs after rumours of child lifting triggered via messages on WhatsApp.
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh for the first time admitted in the Lok Sabha on Thursday that fake news on social media has resulted in many mob lynching incidents in the country, saying the government has asked service providers to put a check on rumour mongering on social media.
Expressing concern over the misuse of social media, Rajya Sabha Chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu also asked the government to evolve a national policy after discussing with all stakeholders including political parties to combat the menace.
The Supreme Court also issued 22 guidelines this week for the central and state governments to put an end to "horrendous acts" of vigilantism, lynching and mobocracy and directed them to work in tandem to take "preventive, remedial and punitive measures".