The speed with which several otherwise unconnected Twitter users — on different sides of the country — managed to identify the suspects in a brutal attack on two gay men in Philadelphia shows the power of the network effects in social platforms like Twitter and Facebook
Crowdsourcing startup CrowdFlower has raised another $12.5 million as it tries to make life better for the data science community. As people try to get better, faster data to power their predictive models, CrowdFlower’s API-focused approach is proving pretty popular.
What if Twitter users could collaborate on deciding which trolls should be blocked or muted on the service — would that help cut down on abuse, or would it solve one problem while creating another?
Two separate research projects from Carnegie Mellon University and Disney Research have analyzed digital sketches in order to detect patterns in people’s drawings. As an exercise in data collection it’s cool, but do we really need to democratize artistic talent with data?
Grafetee, which makes it extremely easy to collect and display location-based data, is now offering more customizable, API-driven services to paying users, from bloggers to local authorities.
New RootMetrics tests shows that AT&T’s LTE networks are on average 4.3 Mbps faster than Verizon’s when downloading data. What Verizon lacks in speed, though, it makes up for in coverage.
Swedish DJ and producer Avicii has agreed to work with network builder Ericsson to experiment with a crowdsourced music composition on. Starting on Wednesday, the public will be able to submit audio tracks that could wind up in Avicii’s new single.
Crowdsourcing is a great idea in theory, but it hasn’t really lived up to its potential, says Alegion CEO Nathaniel Gates. He thinks with some fundamental tweaks, Alegion can change all that for the better.
Iceland’s citizens were given a chance to help forge a new constitution for their country through Facebook and Twitter, so it’s not surprising that they backed the resulting draft. Now it’s over to the politicians.
There may be light at the end of the tunnel for America’s beleaguered patent system thanks to a new partnership between the patent office and expert Q&A site Stack Exchange. The new system, which goes live this morning, invites members of the public to submit prior art.
Knock me down with a feather! After a week of sometimes not-so-civil discourse, alt-rock icon Amanda Palmer says she’s started paying the artists who volunteered to back up her band on its “Theatre is Evil” tour.
Amanda Palmer, an alt rock fan favorite who’s worked Kickstarter and social media masterfully in her career, may have mis-stepped when she posted a plea for free musicians to back up her band in its current tour. Or else it was a publicity stunt.
TaskRabbit is one of the most talked about distributed and freelance workforce startups. While most people use taskrabbits for getting groceries or doing minor tasks, some startups are finding that TaskRabbit is good source for finding researchers and staff up consumer panels instantly.
It is always fun to watch successful founders come back into the startup arena again. Joshua Schachter, who created the social-bookmarking service Delicious, is back with Tasty Labs and today released Human.io, a platform for micro-task collaboration. It seems like a good platform for creatives.
Mobile network testing startup RootMetrics has aims on international expansion, and the first country to get its hybrid-crowdsourcing treatment will be the UK. By combining drive tests, indoor measurements and crowdsourced data, Root plans to start comparing UK carrier 3G speeds in four to six weeks.
Twitter says its Clockwork Raven web app will make it easier for even non-technical people to post job requests to Amazon Mechanical Turk crowdsourcing job site. The app is now available for download from Github.
Netflix wants your help – and we are not talking about its troubled stock: The company is looking for volunteers to join its crowdsourced subtitling community. It’s all just an experiment for now, but it could one day become a massively crowdsourced closed captioning operation.
The cult of Kickstarter and the looming promise of the JOBS Act, have presented an opportunity that Fundable wants to fill. The service, which is part of Virtucon Ventures debuted today with five projects and a goal of helping entrepreneurs raise capital for their businesses.
Add Amazon Studios to the list of online video providers that could soon release some new original programming. The company is looking to hire creative executives to develop and produce original comedies and kids shows for online and traditional distribution.
Hilton Head is an island full of sandy beaches, manicured golf courses and lush green trees. But one thing the island community doesn’t have is good cellular coverage. By working with RootMetrics to crowdsource testing of its local cellular networks, it hopes to change that.
In the world of science, cloud computing provides an ideal platform for crowdsourcing scientific problems across the whole world of researchers, giving them access to data sets and the computing resources to analyze them. If big data is any indicator, scientific crowdsourcing should catch on.
A new startup called CrowdControl is launching today, and it aims to bring order to the world of crowdsourcing by using artificial intelligence to judge workers’ accuracy. Think Amazon Mechanical Turk, only with a quality control mechanism in place to help ensure jobs get done right.
LawPivot, a Google Ventures-funded legal Q&A startup targeting small companies, is broadening its reach by becoming part of Microsoft’s (s msft) BizSpark program. As LawPivot continues to grow, it could help lead a movement toward true Knowledge as a Service.
Professional cataloguers can be great if you want to index content — for professional cataloguers. But if you want to help average people find videos, then you should embrace user-contributed tags, even if they can contain spelling errors. Don’t worry, it still all makes sense to someone.
Asking questions and getting useful answers is the idea behind a new crop of community-assisted recommendation/Q&A apps that have appeared on the web and on mobile platforms. One entrant, Localmind, whose iPhone app is nearing launch, really shows off the promise of this new app category.
Earlier, I pointed out an emerging recent trend in apps: community-assisted recommendations. Recently, I got a chance to talk with the CEO behind one of these apps, Crowdbeacon, which provides location-based recommendations and answers to questions sourced by the app’s user community.
Asking thousands of strangers if those jeans look good on you might not have seemed possible only a few short years ago, but now it’s only an app download away, and it’s just the tip of the iceberg for the new trend of community-assisted decision making.
As crowdsourcing goes mainstream, there’s a heated debate going on about whether the practice commoditizes expertise. Having built an expert crowdsourcing site for the past year, I’m convinced these services don’t have to commoditize expertise. Quite the opposite, I think they can give it direct value.
A few weeks ago I wrote about what crowdsourcing is useful for, breaking it down into three main categories: Work, Input and Organizing. Here are some ideas for tasks that can be crowdsourced and links to sites that can help you with those tasks.
NewsTrust, a non-profit startup aimed at improving the credibility of media, ran a week-long project called Truthsquad earlier this year that crowdsourced fact-checking of political statements, and founder Fabrice Florin says while the effort was a success, it was also a lot of work.
A recent LA Times profile of “Chief TWiT” Leo Laporte reveals how much fun Laporte seems to be having as a professional podcaster — and also reveals that TWiT may make up to $3 million in revenue in 2010, thanks in part to crowdsourcing.
Two weeks after the independently-produced Pioneer One‘s premiere, it’s become the most-seeded show on BitTorrent while also raising over $20,000 from fans for production of the next three episodes. But should the show’s producers seek out a steady source of funding — or stick to crowdsourcing?
We’re kicking off a new video series in which we talk to startups and entrepreneurs with a unique view of technology and its impact. Our first conversation is with Lukas Biewald, co-founder of crowd-sourcing labor platform, CrowdFlower, which aims to redefine the future of work.
Last month saw the launch of CrowdFlower, an interesting venture that applies Dolores Labs’ Labor-as-a-Service platform to the non-profit “micro employment” foundation…
Last night at the Austin Tech Happy Hour, I ran into William Hurley, who showed me his plan to create a new…
JPG magazine, the flagship offering of San Francisco startup 8020 Publishing Inc., is shutting down. And so is the company. The subscribers…