Last summer I wrote about crowdsourcing for our innovation and design quarterly, IN. I chronicled attempts by InnoCentive and IBM, Cambrian House and Current TV to harness the collective energy of relative amateurs to create economic or intellectual value. First intro’ed by Jeff Howe in Wired, it’s essentially a fancy - and fad-y - word to describe a real phenomenon that is shaping the Web. Jeff’s definition, direct from his blog:
The White Paper Version: Crowdsourcing is the act of taking a job traditionally performed by a designated agent (usually an employee) and outsourcing it to an undefined, generally large group of people in the form of an open call.
The Soundbyte Version: The application of Open Source principles to fields outside of software.
We’re preparing the next issue of IN and we may include a new round of these sites to pay attention to. Which ones are the most promising? Give me a heads up, and I’ll check them out.
What comes next? The Bloomberg Businessweek Innovation and Design blog chronicles new tools for creativity and collaboration, innovation case studies in both the corporate and social sectors, and the new ideas that have the power to change the way things have always been done.