July 15, 2006

Collective Intelligence

Prediction Markets By: ams

MIT’s Center for Coordination Science has recast itself as the Center for Collective Intelligence. Tom Malone (who spoke at the New York Prediction Market Summit), and Tomaso Poggio (who co-authored Securities Trading of Concepts) are two of the principals. The new center’s framing question is How can people and computers be connected so that—collectively—they act more intelligently than any individuals, groups, or computers have ever done?. Prediction Markets are explicitly on the agenda. Their proposed (and ongoing) research includes:

  • How can large groups of people produce high quality written documents?
  • How can groups of people make accurate predictions of future events? For instance, in prediction markets, people buy and sell predictions about uncertain future events, and the prices that emerge in these markets are often better predictors than opinion polls or individual experts. When and how do these prediction markets work best? How can they be combined with simulations, neural nets, and other techniques? (emphasis added)
  • How can we harness the intelligence of thousands of people around the world to help solve the problems of global climate change?
  • How can we create an on-line, searchable library of books from many languages and historical eras?
  • How can we help create commercially sustainable products and services for low-income communities around the world?

This focus is strongly related to Marty Tenebaum’s proposals in his AAAI invited talk and PARC Forum on collaboration between people and intelligent agents on the modern web. (In addition to being at the heart of what’s most valuable about Web 2.0.)

Other distinguished faculty include Deborah Anacona, Rodney Brooks, and Alex Pentland. Marty’s son Josh Tenenbaum is also on the faculty.

The center is new enough that their websites don’t appear to be in their final locations. cci.mit.edu still has the old center’s pages, while the new center is at learning.mit.edu. If the links move around, that’s probably why.

Congratulations on the creation of the new center, and good luck!

 ADDENDUM: Apparently I jumped the gun with this annoucement.  The center is now up at cci.mit.edu, and learning.mit.edu has been discontinued.  I changed the link under the first mention of the center’s new name.

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