The concept of the PicturePosts, both the physical platform and the system to archive and share photographs, was the result of a number of groups sharing talents, ideas, needs, and interests. The beginning discussions started through the NASA-funded grant, “Measuring Vegetation Health,” headquartered the Museum of Science, Boston. The need to support remote sensing research using citizen science efforts in local parks came about through discussions with scientists at University of New Hampshire, Boston University, and Brandeis University.
Jean Rogers, Elizabeth Wylde, and Bob Forrester of the Friends of Fresh Pond Reservation, Cambridge, MA, and Clarissa Rowe, Tom Gonsiorowski, David Bean, Ellen Reed, and John Pickle of the Friends of Menotomy Rocks Park, Arlington, MA, worked together to take a basic idea and challenges to create the first version of the PicturePost. This version is made of wood, but we hope that if other groups are interested, we can manufacture a number of posts made of recycled plastic.
An early design of the PicturePost drawn by Tom Gonsiorowski of the Friends of
Menotomy Rocks Park. David Bean, who worked for Polaroid, suggested the octagonal center
plate, which would allow for complete coverage of the landscape. Initially, we considered
building the post/plate with metal, but the cost was prohibitive to create a single post.