This is a vision talk, looking at what is happening on the Web with large scale community interactions. It discusses ongoing efforts, Chinese Human Flesh Search Engine, and a research agenda for "Social Machines" based on these emerging challenges.
1. We are the Web The Rise of the Social Machine Jim Hendler Tetherless World Professor of Computer and Cognitive Science Assistant Dean of Information Technology and Web Science Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute http://www.cs.rpi.edu/~hendler @jahendler (twitter)
2. What is a social machine? Real life is and must be full of all kinds of social constraint – the very processes from which society arises. Computers can help if we use them to create abstract social machines on the Web: processes in which the people do the creative work and the machine does the administration … The stage is set for an evolutionary growth of new social engines.. Berners-Lee, Weaving the Web , 1999
20. Sound familiar? How do you prevent people from ruining articles? (Defacement or vandalism) Software robots automatically reverse obvious defacement immediately. Moreover, there are hundreds of people who spend a little time each day watching the list of recent changes on Wikipedia (see Wikipedia:Recent changes patrol)... (Wikipedia FAQ, 2010) social machine definition: … processes in which the people do the creative work and the machine does the administration…
We learn new things from the Web almost every day – the amount of data available on the Web is stunning – this slide from Google shows how a set of queries relating to flu track the CDC data on flu outbreaks – imagein what we could do by harnessing this information and think about the challenges it poses to use as WEB ENGINEERS?
One new thing happening in Science, emphasized by a project such as Galaxy zoo, is using many many non-scientiststs help scientists solve hard and important projects – there is a huge opportunity for new technologies that can help us manage the scientific, engineering and even social problems facing our world. It is a huge area for new tools and technologies to be deployed.