Does anyone else get bothered by how many observations are marked as "unknown species"?

I doubt it makes a difference in who sees the observation.

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I think Raymie is just saying SOML already means “I really don’t know”, without having to add something new.

I think the problem is that in the current iteration of iNat, SOML is rarely a suggestion, hence kmforum’s suggestion to have a popup forcing new users to choose a coarse ID & matthewvosper adding that “I really don’t have a clue” be included in that popup of coarse IDs.

I don’t see a problem with mapping the existing SOML to “I really don’t know” in the proposed popup. It’s just not obvious to new users that SOML is even an option under our current iteration (thus Raymie’s suggestion to add it to tutorials, rather than waiting for new features/functionality to be added).

Though you’re right that SOML is not that different from unknown in terms of the ID pile, which is why the tangent re: forcing new users to select a coarse ID (with the option of SOML included as an out for when even that is too much)

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It would be cool to have it as a separate button e.g. “I have no idea” where it would generate Life id.

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I think the observations that are there due to ID conflict are different than the ones which just need further ID. It would be very useful if we could sperate the two, not just in SOML but anywhere.

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fair point. You can’t use &identified=false (like you can with unknowns), because obvs with 1 ID of SOML as “I don’t know” would be filtered out along with obvs where multiple conflicting IDs brought it to SOML.

Wasn’t there a feature request to distinguish those?

This one sounds relevant: https://forum.inaturalist.org/t/add-url-parameter-to-only-show-observations-with-disagreements/30308

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Can you help ID some of my succulent observations?

The forum isn’t really a place to ask for ID help. Best to tag the person on a few of your observations on iNaturalist itself.

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I tagged you in the observation

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To be honest, there are observations that defy normality, such as a large solitary wasp in upper east Tn, and no, it isn’t a cicada killer. Very rare to see one, thus no pics available. Don’t dismiss it as a lack of info or something outside the algorithm. I have seen two of them in my entire lifetime and they defy all possible identifications. Of course many people observe a common creature and and perform a half dedicated research of it, but there are a few without explanation.

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I don’t know if you were being funny or serious, but I’m literally still laughing :joy:.

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Wait whats the funny part? I’m confused.

It came across like you tagged tiwane, when he told you it was better to get ID help by tagging on iNat itself.

Turns out it was me who was confused, but that’s ok; I still think it’s funny. (don’t mind me, I think lots of things are funny:)

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Same here. what other kind of things do you think are funny?

Large solitary wasp means pretty easy id can be added, there’re many species of those everywhere, I’m sure there’re many species where you live other than one famous.

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But that wouldn’t be an unknown. It can at least be marked as order Hymenoptera. Or if someone suspects it is a mimic, then Winged and Once winged insects. Heck, even Insects, Arthopods or Animals would work; There’s no reason for it to be Unknown.

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Sometimes I add basic identification to the “unknowns”, but in some cases, I just leave them as they are because I feel like the author is joking. Some flowers in a vase, a landscape with lots of things, or photos of extremely bad quality. Not to mention things that should not be published on iNat of course. But there was one situation when somebody contacted me asking to remove a wrong identification (suggested by the iNat mechanism - it’s just a machine, it’s not perfect), because the insect was extremely rare, the third observation in history, two previous ones coming from the 1950s. Maybe that wrong identification helped theresearcher find that record instead of remaining in the unknowns forever, who knows.

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Flowers in a vase can be IDed as the coarse ID flowering plants (if it’s a mixed bouquet, it may not be possible to go lower), and the wild DQA voted no.

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I also usually can find something to ID in a landscape with lots of things, or I will ask the user what the intended focus of the observation is.

Same for “things that should not be published on iNat”. I either paste the frequent response for non-organisms, especially if the observer has something in the placeholder or description showing they intend the observation to be for the non organism, or I find something in the pic I can ID (eg. 2 from today: 1. someone posted a pic of the sun, but there was a little bit of roof showing in the pic, so I identified it as human and commented that I was IDing for the roof as a human artifact 2. someone posted a photo of the surface of water, but there was a super clear image of trees reflected in it, so I identified it as vascular plants, noting in my comment they were visible in the image.)

By the way, I’m just pointing out some ways to ID in these scenarios; I am not suggesting you nor anyone else should feel obligated to use the same strategies or reasoning. I can absolutely understand just bypassing those types of observations.

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6 posts were split to a new topic: How accurate are plant signs?