I was struck by what (for me) is truly at the heart of crowdsourcing. It is all about diversity which makes the open source programming movement so powerful. No longer is anyone prevented from adding to the pool of knowledge by "credientials." It is a realization that to only have "geniuses" solve problems is not only impractical but fool hearty. Jeff writes...
"...such experiements formed the basis for the Diversity Trumps Ability Theorem. Given certain conditions, Page writes, "A randomly selected collection of problem solvers outperforms a collection of the best individual problem solvers." At the heart of Page's theorem is the observation that people of high ability are a homogeneous group. Many of them have been trained at the same institutions, and they tend to possess similar perspectives and apply similar problem solving techniques, or heuristics. They are indeed better than the crowd at large, but at fewer things. And many problems don't succumb to a singular heuristic, or even to a set of similar ones...Page writes, "...no mere metaphor...It's logical truth.""
Open Source as seen in the Apple App Store
The most powerful form of open source development most visible in our cultural landscape today originated in one of the most secretive, tight-lipped companies on the planet. Often in the area of technology secrecy is essential for success, but with the Apple app store this idea is being redefined. Apple opened up its source code for the iphone/ipod touch (and now ipad) allowing any individual on the planet to develop, publish, and possibly make profit on their creations. This change in company dynamics has allowed apple to foregos a need to constantly come out with new software, but focus on hardware. This handover has allowed developers to take control and develop innovative programs for any aspect of life. The result is 140,000 applications and 3 billion downloads. They have been able to draw out those truly innovative at home developers and highlight their accomplishments.