Part of Discussion

Submitted by bthoole on Fri, 10/05/2018 - 12:24

The layout of the pictures and the labels is one of the most obvious differences presented in the figures. This is from a lack of exact actions and clarity in the methods section. The methods said that the images should be “adjusted to about equivalent sizes”, when in actuality, they should have been the exact same sizes. Furthermore, the exact width and height of each picture is provided by the inkscape program and should have been provided to remedy this inconsistency. As far as the labelling, the methods section provides that a red box should be made for each of the labels and a lowercase letter used. It is true that a color was not specifically given for the text. Additionally, the methods section provided where the location of the box and letter labels should go. However, given that the pictures of figure 2 were not the same size, the final adjustment given in the methods section may have distorted the picture further from the original Figure 1. This could also be fixed if the exact sizes of the images were provided.


Methods draft

Submitted by angelasalaza on Fri, 10/05/2018 - 12:14

The experiment provided instruction as to how the panel format should be presented in Swan’s method section. The instructor's guide began with opening Inkscape and begin importing the pictures onto the browser. That became a difficulty as Inkscape did not run on the current model of the experiment's designated Macbook pro. To accommodate the procedure the photographs were uploaded in the computer laboratory of Morrill two via USB import. The photographs were directed from the instructor’s method to be specific when placing in units of measurement by Inkscape and organize photographs in catalog order from the different views of the spider web and location. From the instructor’s guide, the experiment lacked consistency with the direction of measurement insertion, third-party help was needed to advance through the panel creation. The photographs were uploaded separately from the computer saved files and imported as images on to Inkscape. Each photograph is identified to serve purpose in this experiment the photograph of the stairwell demonstrated point of view and location in reference to the spider web, the screenshot of Live Maps identified the exact coordinates of the observer’s location and the dollar bill was used as a scale to identify size of the spider web.

The instructions followed a set of specific placement and measurements for each individual picture.  The x-axis location of the stairwell photograph measured 0.394 units across the x-axis, 219.951units above the y-axis, width of the picture measured 340.454 units, and height measured 250 units. All units of measurements were placed into the coordinate bar located at the top of the browser. Similar procedure was followed with the remaining two photographs but with varying units of measure. The photograph containing the staircase and spider web measured  0.394 units across the x-axis, 0.0 units above the y-axis, 340.454 units for width of the photograph and 219.951 units for the height of the photograph the screenshotted map measured 0.394 units across the x-axis, 0.0 above the y-axis, 340.454 units for width, and 219.951 units for height. All photographs were labeled at the top left corner with a white box outlined in black. Each box contained different measurements as to its placement the stairwell photograph was labeled with box A located at 0 units x-axis, 428.781units y-axis, 42.0 units for width of the picture, and 41.563 units for height of the unit, the screenshot of the map was labeled B with the measurements of 0.0 units across the x-axis, 178.781 units above the y-axis, 42.9 units in width, and 41.563 units in height and box C measured 340.454 units across the x-axis, 428.781 units above the y-axis, 42.0  units in width and 41.563 units in height. The last figure to be inserted had been an arrow measured at 245.877 units across the x-axis, 265.821 above the y-axis, 45.519 units in width of the picture, and 46.193 units in height on the photograph containing the stairwell photo pointing toward the placement of the spider web.

No observation could be made regarding differences between the original and replicate photograph of the spider web as the instructor did not upload the original photograph into the research project. Though it can be inferred that the replicate was inaccurate as it is too small to be viewed by the reader. The experiment performed was flawed as the instructions for finding the indicated location of the spider web was unclear no markers were used to indicate the correct location or placement of the spider web. Instructor’s directions provided a vague basis as to what stairwell is the correct one. The directions should have required counting each staircase to know which is the exact one used.


Figure 1 replicate


second part of methods intro

Submitted by eehardy on Fri, 10/05/2018 - 12:01

My picture was of a spider nestled between the rungs on a plant pot right in front of the Student Union on Campus. I selected this area because it was pretty close to the Biology Computer Resource Center, which I used as a reference point when describing the directions to the Student Union. I used the Biology Computer Resource Center as a reference point because that is where our class takes place, so I knew that the student following my Method would know its location, thus allowing them to replicate my procedure with ease. One factor that I knew I had to control was the location of the pot where the spider was. There were 4 different pots in front of the Student Union, so I had to specify which one by stating that it was the one on the end nearest the Lincoln Campus Center. I also needed to control where the picture was taken on the pot, since it was a large pot with several potential places that a spider could nestle. So I specified that the spider web was located between the vertical ridges on the pot, right above a patch of vegetation that was growing on the ground beneath the pot. Another variable that I sought to control was the platform for the creation of my image. I knew that most of the class was going to be using Inkscape, but I could not download Inkscape. I looked into Microsoft Word, mainly because it is a very popular platform, so I figured that the person replicating my image would likely already have Word. If they were not able to use the same platform as me, they would not be able to follow my procedure as precisely. I also specified the different colors of the font that I used, and when I put letters in bold. In general, the more detailed I was in my Methods, the more I controlled the different variables. 

MP- Abstract (Rough)

Submitted by cwcasey on Fri, 10/05/2018 - 11:47

Science is about imperfections and this project highlights that montra to a tee. Blindly assembling a scientific figure off of someone else's methods is a daunting task and is sure to generate interesting results  similar to those put forth later in this paper. After receiving the replicate figure, it was evident that the differences between the two figures were due to human error or natural differences. Once I was finished going through and seeing why and how these differences arose, it was important to comprise a short briefing that illustrated the explanations as to how the methods could have been vague and misunderstood. The remainder of this paper will serve as a guideline for how important attention to detail based on the differences between Figure one and Figure Two.


Perfect paragraph week 5

Submitted by jkswanson on Fri, 10/05/2018 - 11:32

The very first thing that I did was look up where spiders like to make their webs. I searched "where do spiders make their webs in northeast America. It gave me limited information basicallt saying that depending on the type they can live in many different places from trees to grass to manmade things.  This led me to begin my search in my backyard which is the Newman center and the trees next to the mahar lecture hall. I looked in the volleyball court net next to Newman center and the bulletin board by the entrance of mahar, I found nothing. I then looked in the trees and found a few webs and used a measuring tape to compare the size of each web. The first two were about 5 inches in size and the third one I found was about seven to eight inches in diameter.  I then used the camera app on the iPhone to compare how each web looked in through the camera lens initially without any effects. The third web contained a leaf in it which helped as a reference for size and to help display the web itself. The third web was clearly the best web for the picture so I chose to move forward with that one.


MP- Discussion

Submitted by cwcasey on Fri, 10/05/2018 - 10:39

There are a multitude of reasons why there were differences between the two figures. Most of them, like the differences between Photo A in the two figures, the size of the box and labels, and the pin drop on the map are a product of poor explanation. Improper or vague instruction could have mislead Colin as he took the photographs and assembled the figure. Upon reviewing the methods submitted, it became clear to me that some aspects lacked essential details which would have proved beneficial when drafting the replicate figure. Conversely, there are some differences that arose as a result of factors that can’t be controlled. For example, In the photograph of the environment in Figure Two, the weather is entirely different than that in Figure One thus the photograph is brighter. Other factors like varying times of day also played a role in this as the angle of the sun could affect how bright the resulting photo is. All in all the resulting differences served as a valuable learning experience. Each one showed just how important details are and how attention to writing said details is even more essential.


Perfect Paragraph

Submitted by fmillanaj on Fri, 10/05/2018 - 10:25

To find a spiderweb on the UMass campus, I had to go through many trials and errors. The first spiderweb I found was too small for my phone to recognize. I had to go search for a bigger (more-defined) spider web. After a few days of searching, I found a spider web on the side of the Lederle Graduate Research center. On the section facing the main road (N Pleasant St), there was a spider web at about hip height. Photographing this web was quite difficult. I had to try to photograph it at several angles, with and without flash. I found that flash worked the best in making the web visible on in my photo. I had to angle the phone so that the camera was parallel to the main part of the spider web.

    To create the figure, I gathered the location of the spider web on open maps.EU and my photo of the spider web, and put them in the Inkscape app. I put the map on the left side and the photo of the web on the right side. Then, I created labels to point out where the location of the spider web was, along with a label that highlighted the spider web on the photo.


Abstract & Acknowledgments Draft

Submitted by jmalloldiaz on Fri, 10/05/2018 - 08:40


One of the fundamental characteristics of any scientific work is its capacity to be replicated by other scientists in order to prove its veracity. In this Methods Project, I designed a multipanel figure and wrote my methods for creating it so that another student could follow my instructions and make the most accurately possible replicate figure. The objective of this project was to learn how important it is in science to take into account the factors that may result in a failure to convey our message, and to improve our scientific communication skills in order to provide a set of instructions that is clear and leads to an accurate replication of our methods.


I thank Erin Elizabeth Hardy ( for following my methods, and professor Brewer for his help in using Inkscape and his comments on this project.


Submitted by amdicicco on Fri, 10/05/2018 - 02:46

The project focused around the photography of a spider web, which is why some of the biggest factors in causing discrepancies were camera settings. Figure 2 included more of the environment than Figure 1, which can be seen by more of French Hall showing. The number of feet was given as to where to take the picture of the environment from, so it is possible that the phone used for Figure 2 had a different focal length. If it was specified to use an iPhone 7 plus, this could have been avoided. In addition, in Figure 1 the bush appears to be darker. This was most likely because the flash was on when the photograph was taken for Figure 2. When the photo for Panel A in Figure 1 was taken the camera was on 1% zoom, in the second figure the web appears closer which suggests that the camera was zoomed in.



Submitted by amdicicco on Fri, 10/05/2018 - 02:45

A map was included in the figure to show where the web was located.  To avoid copyright issues, the map was taken as a screenshot from To find the location, I typed in the closest permanent fixture near the bush which was Franklin Dining Hall. is not too detailed so I screenshotted a larger area to show more buildings and the whole Permaculture Garden. This screenshot was wider than it was tall. The screenshot showed from the Shade Tree Lab past Clark Hall and the grass area past Franklin. Due to the large area covered in the map, I included a red circle which showed the exact location of the web on the bush. In order to not confuse the viewer, I also constructed a key in the bottom right-hand corner that showed the same circle and wrote location of web next to it. The key was placed onto a white background that was outlined in black to make it easily seen.


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