Tag Archives: human


Microtask: we love the forms you hate

Posted on by Tommaso De Benetti

… try “quick sorting” a full filing cabinet). Humankind has sent robots to Mars, mapped the human genome and even (in just 11 years) tracked down Osama Bin Laden. So why is the paperless office still such an impossible dream?

As you probably know by now, here at Microtask we take productivity seriously. We spent many long days and sleepless nights wrestling with this data-based dilemma. Finally we emerged, red-eyed and over-caffeinated but victorious. Ladies and gentlemen, we …

Tags: crowd crowdsourcing digitizing Filing cabinet human iPad iPhone Mars Microsoft Excel microtask forms microwork Osama Bin Laden paper forms Paperless office structured data

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Human Flesh Search Engines: The Most Dangerous Game

Posted on by Tommaso De Benetti

… or The Ring (or looked after a two year old ) knows, nothing is scarier than cute kids.

The Human Flesh Search Engine (HFS) sounds awfully sinister. But far from being a deadly disease or a machine from the Saw series, it is simply a term used to describe searches that are conducted with the help of humans (as opposed to the ones carried out through a search engine like Google).

A tiger in the grass?

A good demonstration of the power of HFS is now known as the South China …

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Behind the façade: How crowdsourcing will bring videogames to life

Posted on by Tommaso De Benetti

… with sufficient algorithmic behaviors to allow for every possible situation.

The cloud will add human intelligence to the recipe, allowing avatars like Milo to be imbued with the experience of millions of brains working together. Milo’s children will learn day by day from human inputs (becoming, de facto, semantic expert systems and developing at the same time their own unique personality.

As these simulacra develop they will redefine our relationships with computers, and might even …

Tags: ai cloud crowdsourcing E3 façade human intelligence Kinect milo Peter Molyneux Rob Gilbert Shigeru Miyamoto TedGlobal Will Wright

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We, Robot: A Vision of What’s to Come

Posted on by Ville Miettinen

… image-processing part of the equation where we start to see difficulties and the huge gulf between human and robot vision.

Humans – with certain relations of mine excepted – effortlessly filter out non-pertinent information. For example, you needn’t re-analyze every last detail in your visual field (consciously noting the color of the curtains, for example) in order to realize that your wife changed the TV channel while you were in the bathroom. You just notice that the room is pretty …

Tags: cloud labor collective intelligence computer vision digital outsourcing human computation mass collaboration Mechanical Turk research robotics

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My Wife, the Computer

Posted on by Ville Miettinen

… at afternoon tea.

This question is the focus of David Alan Grier’s book When Computers Were Human which outlines the pre-information age story of “human computers” doing calculations by hand – not just the straightforward office-worker’s calculation of how many days left until Friday; but complicated, multifaceted problems such as those required for astronomy, cartography, navigation, and (unsurprisingly) warfare. This required teams of people manually crunching numbers to …

Tags: computer David Alan Grier human computation Manhattan Project mass collaboration Richard Feynman

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