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November 17 , 2008

The Raft


This is the story of what is happening in this, the era of 'big data', in which 'citizen scientists' can discover new planets. Drawing on his experience setting up the extraordinarily successful Zooniverse platform, where ordinary internet users contribute significantly to scientific research, Chris Lintott describes the origins and ongoing state of 'crowdsourcing'. In this inspiring, provocative argument, he shows how, collectively, we can beat the experts, digging deep into the science of human motivation to understand just what people think they're doing when they sign up to decode papyri or watch lions.

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Written just as crowdsourcing is poised to become a part of all of our lives, this is an impassioned reminder of what each of us can do when we put our minds to it, and a manifesto for what can happen if we learn the right lessons from the pioneering projects taking place right now.

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