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Become a citizen scientist!

It's Science Week in Australia and the crowdsourcing call has gone out for Weather Detectives to look through old ships' log books and track weather observations from the 1890s and 1900s. It's a good project for older kids, and aims to improve weather forecasting and track climate change. Do try this at home, kids.
posted by superfish on Aug 20, 2014 - 3 comments

The study of human thought & behavior without direct contact with either

The British Museum has published on its frequently informative blog a call for citizen archaeologists to help digitize its Bronze Age Index via a crowd-sourcing site called MicroPasts, which uses the open source PyBossa crowd-sourcing framework that also powers Crowdcrafting. The results will eventually be integrated with the Portable Antiquities Scheme (previously), which features a gigantic image database of finds categorized by period (e.g. Bronze Age or Medieval) and object type (e.g. coins or brooches).
posted by Monsieur Caution on Aug 4, 2014 - 4 comments

You Made Your Big Mistake When I was Cc'd on the Message

Captain Ahab's Motorcycle Club is a project overseen by the perversely multitalented Cory McAbee (previously, previously) It's a band/fan club/film production group, which has been working for the last two years on music written by McAbee and orchestrated/performed by anybody interested in uploading a mix. Its ultimate project will be a feature film chronicling the funeral procession of Abraham Lincoln.
posted by contraption on May 10, 2014 - 1 comment

XRI needs volunteers!

Volunteer as a rover driver for Extrasolar, a crowdsourced citizen-science initiative sponsored by the Exoplanetary Research Institute. Help scientists classify the flora and fauna of Epsilon Eridani b! However, not everyone seems to be on board with the project.. [via mefi projects] [more inside]
posted by theodolite on Feb 20, 2014 - 23 comments

The Wisdom of Crowds

For the past three days, the world of streaming gaming has been riveted by an unlikely phenomenon: Twitch Plays Pokemon. Consisting of a live Twitch.TV chatroom hooked up to a classic Game Boy emulation of Pokémon Red, the program is set to recognize a limited number of commands and execute them in real time, allowing an audience of tens of thousands to collectively control the action as they watch. An astonishing amount of progress has been made, including the dramatic last-second defeat of a third gym leader (GIF) and the solution of a notoriously tricky puzzle on the very first attempt. But all for naught, it seems, as Team Twitch finds itself hilariously stranded on the ledges of Route 19 where, as one viewer explained, "they basically have to walk a small path for about ten spaces without anyone pushing down and jumping Red off the ledge," a grim democratic reality the dedicated subreddit /r/twitchplayspokemon has had all kinds of fun with over the last dozen ludicrous hours.
posted by Rhaomi on Feb 15, 2014 - 101 comments

Wrist Mounted Gadgets Ahoy!

Drop Kicker is a blog that investigates products on Kickstarter and Indiegogo that look scientifically implausible, outright impossible, or completely scammy
posted by The Whelk on Dec 6, 2013 - 15 comments

"Mandatory jail time for crowdsourcing or crowd-judging."

We need better implementation, not more ideas. In the Stanford Social Innovation Review, Kevin Starr argues that prizes are a distraction and don't actually lead to more innovation.
posted by spamandkimchi on Oct 24, 2013 - 10 comments

Crowdsourcing Support for Creators: "Is it idealistic? Hell yes, it is."

John and Hank Green of the Vlogbrothers have launched a new subscription service called Subbable, that aims to crowdsource support for content creators through direct payments, rather than through the typical model that uses advertising. Subscribers can pay nothing and still view the content, but those who opt to pay earn Perks from the channels to which they subscribe. Right now, the vlogbrothers' educational channel Crash Course is the only content available, although applications are being taken for other content creators to join...assuming it works with Crash Course. [more inside]
posted by guster4lovers on Jul 23, 2013 - 18 comments

GiggedIn

On 7 November, Florida rock band The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus begins its Australian tour in Brisbane…or Gold Coast…or Toowoomba…or Gympie. Dubbed the 'Choose our Adventure Australian Tour', the band will play where the most fans commit to attend, in a new spin on crowdfunding/crowdsourcing. Six shows are scheduled for the tour - but the band is leaving it up to the fans to decide (by 'pledging') where they will play on each date, using Australia’s GiggedIn startup. "When you pledge on GiggedIn, you enter your card details but you won’t be charged unless we confirm that the gig goes ahead in your city. If your winning city wins, your card will be charged and tickets will be sent to your email." [more inside]
posted by paleyellowwithorange on Jul 17, 2013 - 11 comments

26 years after Gwangju

The crowdsourced film 26 Years opened in first place in Korean movie theaters this weekend. The movie languished in development for four years, before finally being completed by collecting donations online - when fundraising closed on October 20 this year, 21,233 contributors had kicked in 747,790,000 Won (about 690,000 USD). The contributors' names are listed in the movie's ending credits. The movie's controversial subject matter involves a plot to assassinate former S. Korean president Chun Doo-hwan, in reprisal of his role in the Gwangju Massacre of 1980. The movie is based on Korean comics artist 강풀 Kang Full's web comic 26 Years, serialized from April 2006 to October 2006. (Some links in Korean)
posted by needled on Dec 1, 2012 - 6 comments

Has politics gone peer-to-peer?

Has politics gone peer-to-peer? A rich 90-minute panel discussion with Steven Johnson, author of "Future Perfect: The Case for Progress in a Networked World", featuring Yochai Benkler, Susan Crawford and Lawrence Lessig.
posted by mhjb on Nov 26, 2012 - 6 comments

When the Magic 8 Ball breaks.

The wisdom of crowds -> texts -> mindreading -> the next hour of your life.
posted by prefpara on Oct 9, 2012 - 46 comments

Do the work Indiana Jones couldn't be bothered with

Between 1922 and 1934 archaeologists from the University of Pennsylvania and the British Museum embarked on a large scale excavation of the Mesopotamian city of Ur, one of the world's earliest cities. That excavation generated a huge mass of documents (lettres, field notes, dig report etc.) and now you can help to digitally transcribe them.
posted by MartinWisse on Sep 23, 2012 - 18 comments

I will include your name on the letter in a bigger font

Comedian Myq Kaplan starts a Kickstarter to Figure Out What Kickstarter Considers Art. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Jul 9, 2012 - 68 comments

What it is is Beautiful.

Build Lego onto a Google Map [more inside]
posted by azarbayejani on Jun 26, 2012 - 13 comments

What happens when your "comprehensive" map... isn't?

Yesterday, Pop Chart Lab announced a new print, meant to be "the most comprehensive mapping of the breweries of the USA ever compiled." However, this epic infographic featured many notable omissions. In response to tweets, emails, and comments, the company stopped the presses and worked overnight to make corrections.
posted by kyleg on May 30, 2012 - 41 comments

Butt Paper

Nickstarter - Nick asks you to fund a project, his continued existence.
posted by The Whelk on Apr 23, 2012 - 25 comments

I can see my Grandma from here

The U.S. National Archives today released the returns from the 1940 national census, providing an invaluable resource to historians and genealogists. At the moment, you'll need to know the particular address you want to see--the records are not yet searchable by name. A companion project seeks to fix that by enlisting your help in a crowdsourced project to index the census data. However, if you're looking for a New York address, you can use this clever site from the New York Public Library to look someone up in the 1940 phone book. (FYI, the site seems to be running a bit sluggishly under first-day load, so you may need to be patient.)
posted by Horace Rumpole on Apr 2, 2012 - 31 comments

Mark every death. Remember every victim. Follow every case.

"Homicide Watch is a community-driven reporting project covering every murder in the District of Columbia. Using original reporting, court documents, social media, and the help of victims’ and suspects’ friends, family, neighbors and others, we cover every homicide from crime to conviction." [more inside]
posted by BobbyVan on Mar 13, 2012 - 8 comments

Military Crowdsourcing

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is using a challenge program to find out whether it's possible to put shredded documents back together again. "DARPA’s Shredder Challenge calls upon computer scientists, puzzle enthusiasts and anyone else who likes solving complex problems to compete for up to $50,000 by piecing together a series of shredded documents. The goal is to identify and assess potential capabilities that could be used by our warfighters operating in war zones, but might also create vulnerabilities to sensitive information that is protected through our own shredding practices throughout the U.S. national security community." [more inside]
posted by keli on Nov 23, 2011 - 55 comments

seeking sunken ship, shrinks study stories

Two Aussie psychologists studied the 66-year-old testimony of 70 German sailors rescued after their boat sank. The ship which sank it, the HMAS Sydney, also sank ... taking 645 sailors with it.
After analyzing the stories the shrinks - knowledgeable in the vagaries of storytelling - found that the Germans weren't lying. They crowdsourced the stories, sat down together with a map of the Indian Ocean and ...
posted by Twang on Oct 1, 2011 - 21 comments

ALEC Exposed

ALEC Exposed is a wiki site set up by The Center for Media and Democracy which posts and chronicles leaked documents including more than 800 model bills drafted and approved by corporations during ALEC meetings. The documents have been analyzed and marked-up for clarity. Journalists along with the general public are invited to download the documents and sift through the bills in order to help map the connections back to their own state legislation and legislators. [more inside]
posted by stagewhisper on Jul 14, 2011 - 22 comments

"The Digital Revolution In Reverse"

"Mother Jones [and, later, other media outlets] requested [Sarah] Palin's gubernatorial emails during the 2008 election. Almost three years later, the wait is over. ... Today, at [1:00 pm ET] in Juneau, the state of Alaska is scheduled to release 24,199 pages of emails Sarah Palin sent and received during her half-term as governor of the Last Frontier. State workers will distribute six-box sets and hand trucks (which must be returned) to representatives of a dozen or so media outfits" "Volunteers from the League of Women Voters and the Retired Public Employees of Alaska will be at Juneau's Centennial Hall convention center ... look[ing] for any significant or interesting emails, stick a post-it note on the page, and pass them to journalists, who also will be reading through the 24,000 pages. Exact copies of the best of those emails will be posted online immediately. ... In the same room ... a second set of the documents will be scanned for msnbc.com by Crivella West, an analytics and investigative-research company from Pittsburgh, returning the records to their original electronic form, allowing anyone anywhere to join in the crowdsourcing. That free, public, searchable archive will go online, sometime later on Friday, at http://​palinemail.​msnbc.msn.com." "The Washington Post is looking for '100 organized and diligent readers' to work with reporters to 'analyze, contextualize, and research the emails.' The New York Times is employing a similar system.'"* [more inside]
posted by ericb on Jun 10, 2011 - 158 comments

Learners are doers, McLuhan as teacher

Wikipedia And The Death Of The Expert - "McLuhan prefigured the Internet era in a number of surprising ways. As he said in a March 1969 Playboy interview: 'The computer thus holds out the promise of a technologically engendered state of universal understanding and unity, a state of absorption in the Logos that could knit mankind into one family and create a perpetuity of harmony and peace' ... Wikipedia, along with other crowd-sourced resources, is wreaking a certain amount of McLuhanesque havoc on conventional notions of 'authority', 'authorship', and even 'knowledge' ... Knowledge is growing more broadly and immediately participatory and collaborative by the moment."
posted by kliuless on May 29, 2011 - 90 comments

london students fight back

With kettling becoming a commonly deployed tactic by the London Met, students from the University College London are fighting back with Sukey, launched this morning. [more inside]
posted by asymptotic on Jan 29, 2011 - 56 comments

The Fastest Transcribing by the Greatest Number

“Box 73 and Box 96 contain interesting manuscripts on drunkenness, swearing, adultery and much more...”. The Bentham Transcription Project is using crowdsourcing to transcribe 40,000 unpublished manuscripts of utilitarian philosopher Jeremy Bentham, who died in 1832 but still sits and watches. (prev) In four months, they've knocked off 435 already. [more inside]
posted by msalt on Dec 27, 2010 - 11 comments

The Culture of Death

Five years ago, the dinosaurs of Ryan North's Dinosaur Comics discussed writing a short story about a "Machine of Death" that would predict your fate. It sparked a forum discussion, which snowballed into a book project headed by North, Matthew Bennardo, and David Malki to create an anthology of short stories about the Machine of Death. Stories were submitted*, selected, and illustrated. Alas, no one was willing to publish an anthology that didn't feature Stephen King, Dave Eggers, Neil Gaiman or Nick Hornby. So they published it themselves and set out a challenge for their fans: "We want Machine of Death to become a Number One bestseller [on amazon.com] for exactly one day — October 26." And it happened! Meanwhile, unbeknownst to our heroes, October 26 was also the release date of a new book by a fellow called Glenn Beck (if you've not heard of him, a quick Google seems to indicate that he’s some sort of Ron Popeil-like infomercial huckster). And he's not happy about missing out on the #1 spot.
posted by alopez on Oct 29, 2010 - 74 comments

The Price of Weed

New York:

High Quality - $448.92/oz
Medium Quality - $341.42/oz
Low Quality - $183.36/oz
posted by swift on Sep 21, 2010 - 173 comments

Lost and Gone Forever

Lost Films, a project of the German Federal Cultural Foundation, is a wiki aimed at identifying the over 3500 films declared orphaned or lost in their archives. Other archivists and the public can go to the Identify section and look at surviving photographs, film fragments, and documents, as well as comment and upload any materials of your own, just in case you had promo materials for some unidentified 1915 German war buddy comedy just lying around. (Via Slate).
posted by Weebot on Jul 9, 2010 - 6 comments

Celestial Music of the Crowds.

Offering up a bass track, a guitar track, and a drum track as the common fodder, Wired.com invites remixes from its readers and runs a crowdsourced music experiment. Note for those producing solo in their hovels/studies/caves/garrets/cubicles, and those looking for new sports through which to sell concert tickets and t-shirts: the artists of the future are inclined to organize into teams.
posted by darth_tedious on Jun 12, 2010 - 11 comments

Ain't no grave, can hold my body down

The Johnny Cash Project : animating the music video for Ain't No Grave with frame-by-frame contributions from visitors. Draw your own too.
posted by divabat on Apr 16, 2010 - 10 comments

Many eyes make light work

The Victoria and Albert Museum is using crowdsourcing to determine the best images, crops and enlargements of items in its online database. [more inside]
posted by paduasoy on Feb 3, 2010 - 11 comments

Get Your Ass To Mars

NASA invites you to Be A Martian [more inside]
posted by him on Nov 19, 2009 - 19 comments

Do you like Billie Jean?

He wasn't even supposed to perform, but when Michael Jackson took the stage solo at the Motown 25 in 1983, magic. Billie Jean. The moonwalk. The glove. It was one of those moments to remember. So a few years ago a coupla data dancers started The White Glove Tracking Project to commemorate the performance by analyzing the height and size of MJ's iconic white glove throughout, crowdsourcing the project frame by frame for 10,060 frames. Now the dataset is complete, and the Proce55ed magic is thrilling:
Slinky (75mb QT), Stretchy (45mb QT), and Shapely (33mb QT) by MeFi's own James Seo
Speed=Height (QT) by Zach Lieberman
Giant White Glove by Tim Knapen
and more in the gallery.
posted by carsonb on Oct 9, 2009 - 28 comments

Netflix gives up $1M software prize

The winners of the prize - for software 10% better at recommending movies than Netflix own Cinemax - were a team described here back in June. They beat another team by getting their results in 20 minutes earlier. Netflix was happy: “You look at the cumulative hours and you’re getting Ph.D.’s for a dollar an hour.” - so happy they're offering two new $half-million prizes.

No mention yet whether there's been any progress on the "Napolean Dynamite problem" ... the movies it's hard to predict your reaction to.
When Bertoni showed me a list of his 25 most-difficult-to-predict movies, I noticed they were all similar in some way to “Napoleon Dynamite” — culturally or politically polarizing and hard to classify, including “I Heart Huckabees,” “Lost in Translation,” “Fahrenheit 9/11,” “The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou,” “Kill Bill: Volume 1” and “Sideways.”

posted by Twang on Sep 22, 2009 - 97 comments

Scientists: cancer prevention causes cancer

Kill or cure: making sense of the Daily Mail’s ongoing effort to classify every inanimate object into those that cause cancer and those that prevent it. Paul Battley uses automation and crowd-sourcing in the war against bad science reporting.
posted by fatllama on Aug 31, 2009 - 27 comments

Give a little, get a little

Crowd surf, crowd sourcing, crowd funding? Like being supported by an ocean of people, or collaboration from around the world, crowd funding gets projects financial backing from the people. It's not new, as it has been the method for funding charities and political campaigns for a very long time, but it is a novel attempt at getting funds for other projects. Some people have placed their hopes in crowdfunding as a way to save journalism, while other companies are looking to get micropayment-scale public investments in fashion by offering investors the potential for a cut of future profits. The more typical return is physical goods, like getting the t-shirt you help sponsor [via mefi projects], or a limited edition version of the album. There's another site long these lines, but more free-form in structure: Kickstarter, crowdfunding for people who make stuff. [via mefi projects] The fundees can set a fundraising goal, deadline, and a set of rewards for backers. If the goal's reached by the deadline, then everyone's charged and backers get their goodies. If not, nobody's charged. The previously discussed 8-bit tribute to Miles Davis' Kind of Blue, Kind of Bloop was funded this way.
posted by filthy light thief on May 20, 2009 - 7 comments

Crowdsourcing Activism

A startup is proposing a new model for harnessing the power of the web for activism that gets results: bite sized actions, under written by corporate sponsors.
posted by Bango Skank on Mar 3, 2009 - 37 comments

Crudsourcing

Forbes magazine runs an article promoting Crowdspring, the "design crowdsourcing" website, and calls professional design "snooty". Professional designers go absolutely crazy.
posted by WPW on Feb 4, 2009 - 109 comments

Look around.

"The Mass Observation movement was founded by a group of 1930s' British intellectuals who believed the most revealing way to document an event was to document the peripheral activities surrounding it. The Mass Observers carried out their greatest project on May 12th, 1937, when they dispatched more than 200 observers throughout London to monitor the coronation of King George VI." This coming Tuesday, the folks at Januarythe20th.com are attempting to create a day of Mass Observation in the United States.
posted by TheWash on Jan 16, 2009 - 18 comments

It's sort of like Minority Report, I guess.

the first full release of Photosynth. Stonehenge. Venice. Previously 1,2,3. PC only.
posted by signal on Aug 23, 2008 - 65 comments

A Methodologically Sound Hot Or Not?

FaceStat, a new startup from crowdsourcing consultants at Delores Labs bills itself as "market research for the individual." You upload a photo of yourself, and "within a couple hours, you will have detailed statistics about how people feel about the picture you provide." Oh, and it's powered by creepers like you, using Amazon's Mechanical Turk (previously posted about here). [more inside]
posted by thisjax on May 7, 2008 - 37 comments

Biographicon: crowd-sourcing non-notables

Biographicon : crowd-sourcing non-notables.
posted by stbalbach on Apr 1, 2008 - 7 comments

Mouse in Glove

The White Glove Tracking Project is to Michael Jackson's white glove as Distributed Proofreading is to books. (Partially inspired by the Clickworks Project and the work of artist Paul Pfeiffer)
posted by gwint on May 2, 2007 - 9 comments

Popular Delusions and the madness of the hivemind

Crowdsourcing is the hottest way for companies to get a lot of content for not a lot of effort. From spaceships to t-shirts to iconic characters to lunar landers (via) to the latest entry, open source with money.
posted by Isabeau Sahen on Jul 5, 2006 - 29 comments

Have you told the powers in Washington what kind of world you want?

Have you told the powers in Washington what kind of world you want? You're busy. You don't have time to be a professional "Congress watcher." So we'll be your eyes and ears. We'll track the debates and compromises and bills that will shape the world.
posted by katy_ on Sep 3, 2002 - 16 comments

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