Wisdom of the Crowd

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crowd wisdom
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9/12/2007
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The wisdom of the crowd is the collective opinion of a group of individuals rather than that of a single expert. This process, while not new to the Information Age, has been pushed into the mainstream spotlight by social information sites such as Wikipedia, Yahoo! Answers, Quora, Stack Exchange and other web resources that rely on collective human knowledge. An explanation for this phenomenon is that there is idiosyncratic noise associated with each individual judgment, and taking the average over a large number of responses will go some way toward canceling the effect of this noise. Trial by jury can be understood as at least partly relying on wisdom of the crowd, compared to bench trial which relies on one or a few experts. In politics, sometimes sortition is held as an example of what wisdom of the crowd would look like. Decision-making would happen by a diverse group instead of by a fairly homogenous political group or party. Research within cognitive science has sought to model the relationship between wisdom of the crowd effects and individual cognition. A large group's aggregated answers to questions involving quantity estimation, general world knowledge, and spatial reasoning has generally been found[dubious – discuss] to be as good as, but often superior to, the answer given by any of the individuals within the group.[citation needed]
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Crowd wisdom
The wisdom of the crowd
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