Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Rainforest Redux virtual seminar series with Dr. Ammie Kalan

On Wednesday, June 24th 2020, Chimp&See science moderator Dr. Ammie Kalan gives an online talk about Chimpanzee diversity across their range and her research within the PanAf (which Chimp&See is a part of) at the Max Planck Institute for Science of Human History (MPI-SHH) in their Pan-African Evolution Research Group Monthly Virtual Seminars.

You can listen online via zoom. You need to register (please be aware that it is a two-step registration process) via e-mail: pan-ev.seminars@shh.mpg.de.

It’s at 5 p.m. CEST

Here a link to the flyer: https://www.shh.mpg.de/1738610/rainforest-redux-2020.pdf

Update (2020/06/29)

If you missed this talk by Ammie Kalan, there is a second chance to listen to her on Tuesday, June 30th, also at 5 p.m. CEST, on youtube. There will be a livestreaming at the Primate Conversations Seminar Series: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4sGVAaXo0nw.

No registration needed. Just tune in!

A Pan-African Perspective: Chimpanzee Behavioural Diversity across their Range

The Pan African Programme: the Cultured Chimpanzee ('PanAf') began in 2010 and has used a standardized protocol for collecting data on wild chimpanzees at more than 40 sites across equatorial Africa. All chimpanzee communities studied to date were unhabituated to researchers at the time of data collection therefore remote camera-trap devices were the primary method for recording behavioural observations. Using such an approach, the PanAf has identified new behavioural variants in wild chimpanzees and has recently described unprecedented cultural complexity in community-specific termite fishing techniques. By combining PanAf data with what we already know about chimpanzees, we also demonstrated that just as wild populations are declining, both behavioural and cultural diversity are similarly threatened across their range due to increasing anthropogenic disturbance. Combined, this research highlights the need for widespread conservation efforts to encompass a variety of wild populations if we are to ever know the true extent of chimpanzee cultural diversity.

The talk will be available later at the same URL in case you can't make it to the livestream.

Update (2020/07/04)

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Facebook AI/PanAf collaboration update - Densepose: AI for orienting humans (and chimps) in space

We're happy to announce the results from our first collaboration with facebook AI where they used the PanAf chimpanzee videos to test whether their Densepose algorithm could retrain itself to identify the planes of a new species. Originally Densepose was trained on human videos and can identify an individual's horizontal and vertical planes - so it can identify what is the front and the back, the left side and right side, and  the top and bottom of various body parts, which all move together to document how a person (or chimp) is moving.

In the example below you can see:
Top left panel - a still from the original video with 2 chimps
Top right panel - each of the body parts that can be detected by Densepose, head, hand, forearm, upper arm, torso, etc each coded in a different colour.
Lower left panel - the horizontal plane is coded for each body part. For example, the left side of the head is yellow, the right side is blue.
Lower right pane - the vertical plane is coded: the top of the head is yellow and the bottom is blue.

Put all together, the animal can be oriented in space!