Image Datapalooza Brings Together Researchers from Around the World

Posted: August 28, 2023


image datapalooza participants stand along staircase and smile for a group photo
view of participants from behind viewing screen with the words Image Datapalooza 2023 displayed
image datapalooza participants work as a team to construct a tower of legos

Between August 14-17, 2023, Imageomics Institute hosted Image Datapalooza 2023 at The Ohio State University. The inaugural event was designed to bring computer scientists, biologists, and other domain scientists together to work on producing ML-ready image and video datasets that can be used to address scientific questions. 

More than 30 participants representing five countries gathered together to advance work on a curated collection of research projects throughout the three and a half days. The event started with a keynote address by Chuck Stewart (RPI), and a series of quick research presentations led by participants Jenna Kline (Ohio State), Amber York (BCO-DMO @ WHOI), and Nicky Nicholson (Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew). This was followed by an unexpected and playful Lego Serious Play icebreaker led by Dom Jebbia (Carnegie Mellon). Following these introductions, individual participants presented elevator pitches of potential projects they were hoping for assistance with over the course of the workshop. From these projects, groups self-coalesced into seven interdisciplinary teams focused around shared research goals, methods, and tool creation. Team projects included: Museum mollusk segmentation, Kenyan animal behavior from drone video, Marmoset hybrid classification, Land coverage data exploration for iNaturalist image locations, Simulating raw evolutionary data in Blender, Data Dashboard, and CLIP-model training suitable dataset from species description figure images. The groups worked mostly independently over the next three days pausing only for daily project debriefs to the rest of the workshop participants. A few participants, such as Imageomics Institute's Research Data Manager & Technology Coordinator, Elizabeth Campolongo, worked with several teams throughout the workshop. By doing so, she was able to advance each teams research goals while also using it as an opportunity to upgrade the features available on the data dashboard she is currently developing for the Institute. 

Most promising are the new connections and collaborations participants were able to forge during the workshop. One exciting outcome is that many of the teams plan to continue working on projects started at the event, with several mentioning plans to produce publications resulting from the work. As the institute continues to work to expand the reach of imageomics to new research communities across the globe, events like Image Datapalooza will surely be a driving force to this expansion.

A special thanks goes out to the organizing committee led by Hilmar Lapp (Duke University), which included Chuck Stewart (RPI), Jenna Kline (Ohio State), Elizabeth Campolongo (Ohio State), Kelly Diamond (Rhodes College), and Dom Jebbia (Carnegie Mellon).

View the full repository and project outcomes from this event.


This event was sponsored by the Imageomics Institute and supported by the National Science Foundation under Awards No. OAC-2118240 and AWD-111317. Any opinions, findings and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.