The Crowd Within

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The Crowd Within

Post  Carlos Calegari on Mon Apr 20, 2009 12:53 am

The article starts out by explaining the wisdom of crowds. It goes further by contradicting the common wisdom that the first guess a person makes on something is the best possible answer that they can come up with. Studies show that when a person makes two guesses, accuracy can be improved up to 13%. It actually shows insight on how human minds have a built in crowd capability.

http://www.economist.com/science/displaystory.cfm?story_id=11614183

Carlos Calegari

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Is the crowd really wise? According to Asch...

Post  Brooke Stanislawski on Mon Apr 20, 2009 1:41 am

In the 1950s, Asch conducted a study that explored conformity and accuracy of answers within a crowd. This study involved three or more confederates (those involved with the study) and one participant. The observers were shown one line and were asked to compare this line to three other lines. Two of the three lines were a different length than the original line. The experimenter asked which line matched the original line, a clear and easy task. The participant would always answer last after the confederates, who would choose an incorrect line. The results yielded an alarmingly high percentage of participants who agreed with the confederates and guessed the incorrect line. Because at least three other individuals guessed the incorrect line, the participant chose to follow the pattern, just as in the "wisdom of the crowds" game we played in class. Asch would disagree with the article from the Economist since his study proved that the crowds are evidently not wise.

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According to Koessler, and Ziegelmeyer . . .

Post  Aaron Glynn on Mon Apr 20, 2009 2:01 am

Information Cascades are NOT FRAGILE.
In experiments performed on behalf of the Max Planck Institute of Economics done on university of Strasbourg students the authors (see subject line) concluded that "highly informed subjects follow the herd regardless of their information".

Is this one more blow for skepticism. if so its more bad news for ingenuity and the human race.

here is a site with a link to the paper referenced at the bottom
http://edoc.mpg.de/397337
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