Talk:Collective intelligence

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Why Son You Afraid of Something?[edit]

I Don't Know About This, It's Just Kinda Followed Me To Armenia, Maybe I Can Redeem Myself To True God's Some Omnipresence...I Love Buda


The entire political sense of collective intelligence has been removed, despite a mainstream politician (Al Gore) using it in just this sense. This is censorship, period. I request that you put some element of the material regarding political parties and constitutions as organizing collective action back in, as its removal seems simply to validate the narrowly technical views.

In opposition to the above, I state that technical views are anything but narrow. They are, in fact, quite useful in getting a deep understanding of CI.

Murray Turoff and Roxanne Hiltz researched online Collective Intelligence starting in 1986. Their measure was obtained by comparing the group problem solution with the best individual solution in the group. See

Needs renaming[edit]

The most prominent opponent of 'Collective Intelligence' was a presumably little known individual called Albert Einstein. Oh, hes the one turning in his grave right now due to the idiotic naming of this phenomenon. If there is any chance that the hideous oxymoron 'Collective Intelligence' could be renamed to, say, 'Consensus' or 'Collective Processing' or more aptly 'Collective Infinite Stupidity', please make it so. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:23, 7 March 2008 (UTC)

Amen, brother! This reads like stream of consciousness of some low IQ, high pretensions individuals who overdosed on ketamine. Description of views of the supporting "scientists" reads like something straight out of "Who is who in New Agey pseudoscience". And bringing into this Thomas Jefferson who sincerely believed in educated citizenry running a free republic (not a multitude of ignorant postmodern sheeples slaving for their "global-minded" overlords) just adds insult to injury. (talk) 03:15, 27 April 2009 (UTC)

Needs wikification[edit]

This needs to be split into sections for easier reading/scanning. It probably could also stand to be "tightened up" a bit (i.e., edited), but maybe that's just the impression I got from scanning through the 16 paragraphs with no section breaks. - dcljr (talk) 04:46, 26 August 2005 (UTC)

Okay, I've had a bash at trying to sort it into slightly more managable chunks, but as I don't know a lot about this subject, I'm reluctant to do any more drastic editing!

In particular, the paragraphs that I put under "general concepts" don't make a lot of sense to me. Perhaps they should be edited, re-written or discarded by somebody who understands this topic.

At first glance, the French version of the page appears to be much better written and structured, with more interesting real-world examples. Here's a rough translation of the headings, just to give you a flavour:

  1. 1 Definition
   * 1.1 Charactistics of collective systems
  1. 2 Natural collective intelligence
   * 2.1 Migrating birds
   * 2.2 Ants: a natural model for resolving distributed problems
         o 2.2.1 Task division
               + Mechanisms of task division
         o 2.2.2 The shortest path
   * 2.3 Termites and self-assembly (uncompleted)
  1. 3 Artificial collective intelligence

Perhaps it would be worth translating some of this for the English version? I could do it if necessary. Please contact me if you would find it useful.

Orangejon 03:05, 14 December 2005 (UTC)

SOX and CI[edit]

Where I work Sarbanes-Oxley is being taken to mean shut off access to everything, lock down the Internet. And I'm just wondering if there are any thoughts on how that affects the value of a company's collective intelligence, should a shareholder worry if the collective Intelligence is growing increasingly blind.

Important page-can I help?[edit]

I admire Tom Atlee very much and consider Collective Intelligence to be one of the core concepts for restoring democracy in America and elsewhere. If there is anything I can do to help here, please just give me guidance. I will be at the meeting in Boston next month. Would love to get together with folks interested in Collective Intelligence and/or Open source intelligence Robert Steele 20:25, 5 July 2006 (UTC)

Emergent consciousness and Cartesian Dualism[edit]

This article presupposes the truth of emergent conciousness and consequently the falsehood of Cartesian dualism:"Your conciousness _is_..." etc. ~~(unsigned)

It seems like the article is talking mainly about 'intelligence' as opposed to 'consciousness'. But even so, why shouldn't the emergent phenomenon be 'real', or exist? Paxfeline 13:16, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Alternative Meaning: Collective Intelligence in Computer-Based Collaboration?[edit]

Somebody deleted this note so I am posting it again in case that was an accident I am familiar with this book by John Smith: Collective Intelligence in Computer-Based Collaboration (published by Lawrence Erlbaum Associates in 1995). In it, Smith outlines his theory of collective intelligence as the information processes that groups undertake to transform intangible knowledge (private and shared) into tangible knowledge (instrumental and target) aided by ephemeral knowledge (information in between tangible and intangible that is destroyed or lost after brief periods of use and not included within the final target artifact). Do you think that a section on this work would be relevant in this page? Jsarmi 20:23, 29 March 2007 (UTC) Repost: Jsarmi 15:53, 4 April 2007 (UTC)


This article consistently brings up politics, which seems not very relevant to the topic. Could use a lot more citations and less POV. Dreamer.redeemer 06:06, 18 October 2007 (UTC)

This article needs more...a lot more.[edit]

I find it extremely ironic that Wikipedia itself is perhaps one of the best examples of 'Collective Intelligence' online, yet it is not even mentioned as one of the examples of CI. In fact, some of the things that first come to my mind when I think of CI are not at all emphasized here. I truly feel - especially in this very environment - that more information and discussion concerning online CI (such as wiki and open source communities) should be included. Further discussion and ideas should also be raised concerning the implications of online CI and what this truly means to people in the grand scheme of things. The majority of this article portrays CI as a positive thing...but what about its negative implications? For every piece of information that a user freely generates online, huge corporations such as Google, Yahoo!, and others, along with governments, are watching us. What do they do with this information? Is our CI possibly giving these establishments more centralized control? How is this information we share being used to exploit us? After considering all this, can CI really be considered 'intelligent'? What does that even mean in this sense?

I truly hope that further discussion can be generated around these questions in order to develop better content for this article. In our current time, CI is an extremely important issue, and right now I don't feel this article is doing it justice. Wikipedia epitomizes the idea of CI, yet ironically is doing a terrible job in actually saying much about it all.

IntelligenceGirl (talk) 06:32, 6 December 2007 (UTC)

Pure speculation. Unreferenced claims, such as this speculation, have no place in articles, and since the talk page is for discussing changes to the article, this discussion should hardly be here. I'll give you a chance to read this and will then delete it in a couple days. Thanks, Slartibartfast1992 22:35, 7 December 2007 (UTC)
Sure, I can understand that you might assume all my questions and claims are "pure speculation", yet I can, in fact, reference several sources that discuss many issues that I have brought up. As I am new to the Wikipedia community, I thought it best to attempt to generate some discussion before trying to contribute to the actual article. Of course, I wish to maintain the integrity and veracity of the article and simply feel that for such a broad and loaded topic as this, the article is lacking in many ways. I'd like to help contribute to a topic that interests me. That is all.

IntelligenceGirl (talk) 06:55, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

Show those sources, if you have them, here on the tlk page. But I find it highly unlikely that Wikipedia would be considered a collective intellingence because of its basic failure to comply with the meaning of "collective intelligence"; it should be a group of people whose minds are somehow linked, therefore, a mind between many, or a collective intelligence. --Slartibartfast1992 21:53, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

How can Wikipedia not be considered an example of CI? It was mentioned that CI 'should be a group of people whose minds are somehow linked'. Are our minds not linked through the contributions we're making toward this article? Each article that is constructed is an example of CI. Any content that is generated by a group of users could be considered an example of CI. I can understand how this might deviate from more traditional definitions of CI that cite examples concerning 'swarm theory' or things of that nature, but about 70% of research I've uncovered for CI specifically discusses online content as a major form of CI. It's important for this article to acknowledge the new meanings that CI is taking on with the advent of online technology. Several sources I've been investigating refer to online intelligence as collective intelligence as well, and actually cite Wikipedia and Google as the best examples of this (see "Tapping into the Wisdom of Crowds" by Richard Naish, [1], "Mass Intelligence" by James Surwiecki [2], "The Power of Us" by Richard D. Hof [3], and "Collective Intelligence" by Michael Castelluccio [4], . Also, "Wikinomics" a book by Don Tapscott [5] also refers to Wikipedia, Open Source communities, etc. as collective intelligence created through mass collaboration, and MIT's Center for Collective Intelligence can provide more insight into this entire issue [6]. On another note, I've been looking into the Wikipedia article for "Collaborative Intelligence" [[7]] and am not sure I see the difference between collective intelligence and collaborative intelligence. The article seems to imply that collaborative intelligence is specific to web/online activity - which is something that is not touched on very well in this article, though should be. I'm thinking that perhaps this article should incorporate the "Collaborative Intelligence" article to emphasize how new technologies provide masses with better platforms for collaboration and how this results in important entities such as Google, Wikipedia,, and other online resources where all information is user-generated.

I recognize that throwing a bunch of resources out here might be too much at once, but I'd be happy to break it all down as well as add more "academic" research that I found in journals accessed through online databases - which unfortunately cannot be accessed without a user account. Before I did, though, I wanted to get some input concerning expanding upon the definition of CI to include examples of online CI and everything that surrounds this loaded topic. Thanks. IntelligenceGirl (talk) 20:40, 15 December 2007 (UTC)

Avoid self reference[edit]

This article contains self references, which it's not supposed to do: Wikipedia:Avoid self-references. I'm posting this here because this is likely to come up often - since wikipedia is an obvious subject for this article, it is necessary to watch out for this. It's OK to talk about wikipedia, you just have to make sure it's written in such a way that if the article was in print, or some other website it still makes sense. Ariel. (talk) 09:25, 17 January 2008 (UTC)

objection to being stalked[edit]

I wish to bring to this group's attention the fact that I am being stalked, and any contributions I make are being undone. I added the latest book on COLLECTIVE INTELLIGENCE, which does NOT have my name on the cover, I simply published it, and also offered it free online, and someone had the gall to undo my edits, not because of the substance, but because they are, with a couple of others, systematically stalking me.

I ask for a mature person to evaluate my contribution to this page so as to validate the relevance and value.

RobertDavidSteeleVivas (talk) 15:20, 12 August 2008 (UTC)

I removed the spamlink to Amazon that you added. How's that for a start? Toddst1 (talk) 14:50, 15 August 2008 (UTC)

Anyone willing to take a stab at improving this article?[edit]

This article already is quite good and could use just a bit of cleanup. Also, might I suggest you move all the non inline references to becoming inline references (as it is, some of them already are, so they're a bit redundant). Anyone willing to take a stab at improving this article? Harvey the rabbit (talk) 02:10, 12 November 2008 (UTC)

removal of a para[edit]

I removed the following paragraph

Collective intelligence is an amplification of the precepts of the Founding Fathers, as represented by Thomas Jefferson in his statement, "A Nation's best defense is an educated citizenry." During the industrial era, schools and corporations took a turn toward separating elites from the people they expected to follow them. Both government and private sector organizations glorified bureaucracy and, with bureaucracy, secrecy and compartmentalized knowledge. In the past twenty years, a body of knowledge has emerged which demonstrates that secrecy is actually pathological, and enables selfish decisions against the public interest. Collective intelligence restores the power of the people over their society, and neutralizes the power of vested interests that manipulate information to concentrate wealth.

I think the reference to the Founding Fathers is rather inappropriate. The rest of the paragraph refers to one government only (without even clarifying which one). "In the past twenty years" will not survive a dozen years. There is no references to statements such as the one in the last sentence. Overall, it is essentially oriented and without references. Anthere (talk) 14:36, 6 August 2009 (UTC)

Halo Videogame as an example of CI?[edit]

The Sims and Second Life are definitely nonlinear...but what's the justification for Halo? It has a predetermined story that the character either progresses through or dies. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:07, 12 September 2009 (UTC)

yeah, halo is completely linear in that respect. why is it used as an example with nonlinear mmorpgs? (talk) 08:40, 18 July 2010 (UTC)

Intelligence Citations Bibliography for Articles Related to Human Intelligence[edit]

You may find it helpful while reading or editing articles to look at a bibliography of Intelligence Citations, posted for the use of all Wikipedians who have occasion to edit articles on human intelligence and related issues. I happen to have circulating access to a huge academic research library at a university with an active research program in these issues (and to another library that is one of the ten largest public library systems in the United States) and have been researching these issues since 1989. You are welcome to use these citations for your own research. You can help other Wikipedians by suggesting new sources through comments on that page. -- WeijiBaikeBianji (talk) 21:00, 10 July 2010 (UTC)


Some references are clearly missing in this article - it would be nice for these to be added, where relevant. For example, William Wheeler is mentioned in the history section but a reference is never mentioned. Could someone please improve this. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:47, 1 September 2010 (UTC)

History section, starts too late.

H.G.Wells Actually used the phrase "collective intelligence" in The History of Mr Polly back in 1910, substantially pre-dating the current earliest mention in the history section. I doubt Wells was using it there as something entirely novel either, but I'm lost for an original source. I guess it was common currency of debate in the reform club of the time.

"He has a fixed idea that something called a "collective intelligence" is wanted in the world, which means in practice that you and I and everyone have to think about things frightfully hard and pool the results, and oblige ourselves to be shamelessly and persistently clear and truthful and support and respect (I suppose) a perfect horde of professors and writers and artists and ill-groomed difficult people, instead of using our brains in a moderate, sensible manner to play golf and bridge (pretending a sense of humour prevents our doing anything else with them) and generally taking life in a nice, easy, gentlemanly way, confound him!" — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:04, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

Is this concept a special case of the Law of Large Numbers?[edit]

This is something I've been thinking about quite a bit today, along with the article about the book "The Wisdom of Crowds," which links to this article.

Consider a multiple-choice test with four choices, one of them correct. We poll the arbitrarily large crowd. Let us stipulate that it's a difficult test and most people don't know what the correct answer is. So, among those people who don't decline to answer at all, we have a group of people numbering n, and approximately random distribution of people choosing the four different answers, averaging n/4 for each. Only, there are in the crowd a modest number of people who know the answer, a small fraction of the crowd, numbering m. So we count the votes from the crowd, and each of the three false answers gets n/4 votes, while the one true answer gets n/4 + m votes.

Granted, with Poisson distribution I wouldn't expect all the false choices to get exactly or even approximately n/4 votes every time, but I would expect the proportions to converge towards n/4 as n rises. Likewise, the higher n becomes, the greater number m (as an absolute, not necessarily as a proportion of n) will be found--if we select more people to take part, we will get more who actually know the answer.

So, tl;dr there's nothing mystical or even especially interesting going on here, it's just the Law of Large Numbers at work. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:41, 4 March 2013 (UTC)

Missing reference links/content[edit]

After reviewing this article, I noticed a couple of issues that needs to be addressed. As mentioned above, there are few issues in the References section of this article. Some references miss a title and also there are a few dead links in this section of article. I will fix these dead links and perhaps add the missing titles. Vaishsiva7789 (talk) 03:34, 17 October 2013 (UTC)

I checked up with the reference section. I agree with you and there are few other things that can be added to the article. A clear explanation about collective intelligence from Pierre Lévy can be added.And I also felt that people interested in collective intelligence would be interested to know about the academic activities going on. So I think an Education/Academic section can be added to this article. PraveenKumanan (talk) 03:36, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
Good thought PraveenKumanan. What would be the basic things that needs to be included in this section? Vaishsiva7789 (talk) 05:53, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
I have added Journals and about the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence. PraveenKumanan (talk) 17:59, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
I have also included some information about the Collective Intelligence Research Institute under the Education section. Vaishsiva7789 (talk) 18:47, 17 October 2013 (UTC)

I also notice some internal dead links in the article which can be removed to make the article look more readable. Vaishsiva7789 (talk) 17:08, 17 October 2013 (UTC)

Define of Collective Intelligence - Levy[edit]

I felt that definitions on collective intelligence from famous author like Pierre Levy should be added on the Wikipedia page. Most of the articles in Wikipedia have an explanation on about the topic by an influential writer. I didn't find one on this page, hence I added a definition on collective intelligence by Pierre Lévy. PraveenKumanan (talk) 05:27, 17 October 2013 (UTC)

Confusing | group intelligence[edit]

The article carries a warning that "collective intelligence" 'is not to be confused with' "group intelligence", then starts right off stating that "collective intelligence" 'is' ["shared intelligence" or] "group intelligence". This is confusing and contradictory as a subject can not simultaneously be clearly distinct from another thing and really be (of the type proper of) that same thing.
Edit: It may or may not help to observe that the article is linked from Open-source intelligence (OSINT, as in secret services) even though that link underlies the differing term "public intelligence". It has not quite escaped me that a cleanup may have to extend to correcting that link also.
-- (talk) 20:38, 3 May 2014 (UTC)

Looking at [1] it seems like collective intelligence is more of a factor in determining how intelligent a group will be, as well as different predictors that are associated with higher levels of collective intelligence. Group intelligence on the other hand seems to be the actual phenomenon of averaging the responses together in order to come to an answer that is on average closer to the actual answer than any individual. In connecting the two together it seems like higher levels of collective intelligence in groups are associated with a better ability to come close to the correct answer. That is a group with lower collective intelligence would when averaged in a group intelligence manner would get an average answer that is further away from the truth then groups with higher collective intelligence.
One way to fix this would be to remove group intelligence from the first sentence and then expand upon the actual group intelligence page by taking some concepts from the collective intelligence page that might fit better on the group intelligence page.
Hlandis333 (talk) 00:50, 14 November 2016 (UTC)
Update: Looking at a few of the named sources in the article it seems as though the terms collective intelligence and group intelligence are used almost interchangeably. The page for group intelligence should probably be linked to collective intelligence which is what is done with the shared intelligence page. A section could then be added somewhere in the collective intelligence article about the similar and confusing terms.
Hlandis333 (talk) 13:34, 14 November 2016 (UTC)

I'm a peer reviewer for Communication in Groups and Organizations! I like this article - it's very complete and seems to cover all the facets of the article. I can't really see what edits you or Davidzhangcmu have made to the article. In terms of what could be improved, there are six occurrences of points that have been flagged in need of citation, and one claim is marked as dubious. Fixing some of these would be a good start. Happy editing! Pavan.gollapalli (talk) 04:21, 29 November 2016 (UTC)

Organizational Communication - Peer Review[edit]

I think the article is very comprehensive, complete and well written. There are a few changes that I would consider. In the first section 'Collective Intelligence', the first two paragraphs talk about what collective intelligence is and is more on the lines of describing and defining it. However paragraph 3 is more aligned with what the future of collective intelligence is and what the impact would be, This is a bit confusing and does not flow easily with the start.

There is a nice flow of sections from the definition, history and then dimensions. However, examples seem to be a bit misplaced in the article. I would consider integrating the examples into the different sections where appropriate rather than having it as a separate sections itself. I think that would be more helpful to the reader to understand different points if they were supported with examples integrated into the individual sections themselves.

Apart from that I think the article has great depth and breadth and covers most of a what a reader would like to know in my opinion. Good job! Rjhaveri95 (talk) 20:54, 30 November 2016 (UTC)

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  1. ^ Woolley, A. W.; Aggarwal, I.; Malone, T. W. (10 December 2015). "Collective Intelligence and Group Performance". Current Directions in Psychological Science. 24 (6): 420–424. doi:10.1177/0963721415599543.