Crowdsourcing and me

Jeff Howe, a contributing editor at Wired Magazine, is putting the finishing touches on his book Crowdsourcing. Since the book is about tapping into the resources of the public (i.e. you and me) he has essentially pre-published the book in blog form and asked for comments that might be included in the book.

This book is of more than passing interest to me for a few reasons. I find the subject matter very compelling, Howe is a good writer, and also I figure prominently in Chapter 6. Howe interviewed me regarding the collaborative MATLAB programming contest that we’ve been running for many years now. He was very generous to me regarding quotes and material associated with the contest. I also like the discussion of F.A. Hayek’s “The Use of Knowledge in Society.” The subsequent analysis reflects how I think of the contest: as a social game that draws out hard-to-reach local knowledge for the benefit of the group.

Here’s the text: Crowdsourcing: Chapter 6: The Most Universal Quality—Why Diversity Trumps Ability.

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