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Couldn t afford The opposite is in fact often true that when we are faced with a major decision that can have long lasting conseuences we often follow what seems to have been successful for veryone Bark else In ConclusionI think he had a number of interesting facts that he tried to make too much of I think if you look hardnough there are situations when a crowd s decision turns out right and when it turns out wrong But you could probably find individual decisions with the same result And I m uite sure that under some circumstances a crowd will come to a better collective decision What I don t think is that you can usefully draw any general magic bullet rules about this Each situation is sui generis and specific to itself As always the devil is in the details But that doesn t make for a very interesting book or one that will sell does it Two heads are better than one And a hundred heads are On Such a Full Sea even better And a thousand are almost perfect Watch the asymptote as it approaches infinity You are getting veeeerrrry sleeeeepyThis is a very interesting concept fleshed out into a very boring book It seems like a graduate thesis that got stretched to book length for publication in hopes of drafting the popular slipstream of writers such as Malcolm GladwellThe premise is fascinating and the first chapter delivers After that it reminds me of papers I wrote in high school where I d state a proposition and then strip mine all available research materials in a singleminded uest for only supoorting information It feels very one sidedOverall as I m sure you can tell I found it a bit of a disappointment because it could have been a verynjoyable article or Hello, Hippo! Goodbye, Bird! even a book if it wasn t so heavy handed in pursuing the thesis s applicability tovery aspect of human Cannibal endeavor Maybe somewhere inside this poorly written incoherent book there s a decent short article waiting to be written Who knows maybe that article has already been written and that s why this foolishness has been perpetrated My heart goes out to the poor fool who had todit this thing that s assuming it was Mastered (The Enforcers, edited because you really can t tell by reading it What must it have been like before thediting Fortunately the basic idea isn t hard to understand and certainly it s repeated often Man, Son of Man enough Of course it s also denied in various places and then again there are numerous contradictions within the book Not to mention at least one basic mathrror But never mind My advice read the title and subtitle absorb the wisdom in them and go on to something Alter Ego else I read this book I thought in preparation for a scheduled discussion of it at the college Homecoming weekend That s one discussion I won t be attending Ciao Bill Buckley famously uipped that he would rather be lead by the first 400 people listed in the Boston telephone directory than the faculty of Harvard a populist observation which still brings a smile to our faces This book which I ve wished to read for some time finallyxplains the wisdom of Buckley s insight It also answers a nagging uestion for me at least on why so many otherwise intelligent politicians specially on the left say and do such stupid thingsThe simple answer is that diversity of opinion which the author calls cognitive diversity is the only diversity that matters Get nough unconnected adults together in a room with a mix of opinions and Uncommon Wisdom experiences and their deliberations will consistently produce far better results than going to thexperts This is counterintuitive in the Unseen City extreme as we have been increasingly taught that one should trust a few heavy breathingxperts in any given area public health social policy you name it to decide what is best for us plebs With most things the average is mediocrity the author Art explains With collective intelligence it sxcellence p11 And later Heretical or not it s the truth the value of God Is in the Crowd expertise is in many contexts overrated p32 You can imagine that this book was not well received by the Harvard faculty or liberal lions in Boston orlsewhereAmazingly the author James Surowiecki was a journalist until a few years ago at The New Yorker where he wrote the Financial Page column I say amazing as Surowiecki arrived at the venerable institution after Attracting Songbirds to Your Backyard editor Tina Brown had worked hard to make the magazine trendydgy and by injecting politics dumber and dumber It was actually The Matriarchs (The Family editor David Remnick who took a chance on him and for many years he remained a voice of reason within its increasingly politicized pagesHis refreshing thesis is stated clearly in the introduction under the right circumstances groups are remarkably intelligent and are often smarter than the smartest people in them pxiii Ponder that for a moment The smartest personven several of the most Notes for the Everlost expert will regularly underperform the group s collective wisdom Surowiecki is wonderfully categorical in saying this insight that under the right conditions imperfect humans can produce near perfect results has not been challenged p106The originalxperiment which underpins the Wisdom of Crowds not of Mobs which the author admits demonstrate the opposite took place over a century ago at a county fair in England There a British scientist named Galton stumbled on an ox weight judging competition where 800 fair goers paid a small fee to make a guess to When I Moan (Vassi and Seri 1: Russian Stepbrother Romance) earn rewards Obviously a county fair attracts many farmers and ranchers who arexperienced with ox tending as well as many fair goers who aren t As Surowiecki xplains Galton undoubtedly thought that the average guess of the group would be way off the mark After all mix a few very smart people with some mediocre people and a lot of dumb people and it seems likely you d nd up with a dumb answer But Galton was wrong pxiii The average guess was 1197 pounds ssentially a perfect guess as the correct one was 1198 And notice that Galton s presumed attitude erily Attracting Birds to Your Backyard echoes that of many of today s intellectualsHow could that be Luck Anti populists andlites the world over tremble at the answerYet guessing the weight of an animal is a rather simple assessment of a clear activity weighing something The introduction Deep Listening ends with a recentxample involving much complicated calculations In 1968 the US submarine Scorpion disappeared on its return from a tour of duty in the North Atlantic Only the sub s last reported location was known which drew a potential search circle of twenty miles wide and many thousands of feet deep a potentially hopeless task Instead of gathering a small group of submarine Bird-by-Bird Gardening experts the naval officer in charge assembled a team of men with a wide range of knowledge including mathematicians submarine specialists and salvage men Instead of asking them to consult withach other to come up with an answer he asked The Works of Saint Augustine each of them to offer his best guess Each participant was asked to rate the likelihood of various scenarios what went wrong speed at the time steepness of descent which were collected and via a process called Bayes s theorem produced a best or collective guess of the sub s location Thend result Only 220 yards from the actual location at the bottom of the seaEven so both these Unbuttoning the CEO (The Suits Undone examples come from but one area of the problem solving arena which Surowiecki calls simple cognition problems mostly guessing something that can be known definitively Other areas where the startling wisdom of crowds also manifest include coordination problems what is a fair price for buyers and sellers how to drive safely in heavy traffic and cooperation ones getting distrustful people to work togetherven against their self interest including paying taxes and dealing with pollution There are times think of a riot or a stock market bubble when aggregating individual decisions produces a collective decision that is utterly irrational pxix But these are My Teacher Is a Robot exceptions which tend to prove the rule and often lack criticallements for good decision makingThe key to good group decisions he discovers is cognitive diversity and independence of thought because the best collective decisions are the product of disagreement and contest not consensus or compromise Paradoxically the best way for a group to be smart is for Supper Club each person in it to think and act as independently as possible p xixThe author fleshes out the ramifications of these startling observations in capitalist markets corporate decision making and democratic governance whereven the skeptical and ugenicist Galton realized after his county fair piphany The result seems creditable to the trustworthiness of a democratic judgement than might have been Professional Capital expected pxiiiBut what about group think one wonders Surowiecki confirms when decision makers are too much alike in worldview and mind set theyasily fall prey to groupthink which includes a conviction that dissent is not useful Deliberation in a groupthink setting has the disturbing Seven Dwarfs Find a House (Disney Classic) effect not of opening people s minds but of closing them pp2538Allan Bloom s The Closing of the American Mind anyone Yet since its publishing in 1987 have we paid heed to its warningsWhich brings me to my contention of the startlingly poor decisions that many politiciansspecially of the left makeNot to pick on New York one of the bluest of blue states yet both the Governor and city Mayor made disastrous decisions during this pandemic Were they the result of liberal groupthink The Governor mandated nursing homes to open their doors to former and non resident Covid patients to free up hospital beds and forbade that the nursing homes test them for Covid This tragic order was disguised denied and only reluctantly reversed after a month of cascading nursing home deaths The Mayor ordered the public transport schedule subways and buses to be cut in half in the condescending belief that if he allowed full schedules it would Berlioz, Vol. 2 encourage nonssential workers to use them Instead it forced The Middle Sin (Cleo North essential workers into many tighter spaces likely spreading the diseaseasily To be fair the Mayor of London was similarly arrogant and misled Do these leaders inner circle lack diversity of opinion Do they only interact with like minded people LikelyWorse we can now surmise how the Administrative state birthed by the ultra progressive President Wilson over a century ago has transformed into the ideologically bent and powerful swamp of today As Surowiecki The Mediterranean Millionaires Mistress explains And trusting an insulated unelectedlite to make the right decisions is a foolish strategy given all we now know about small group dynamics groupthink and the failure of cognitive diversity p267What a recipe for lack of accountability amid a plethora of poor decisionsSadly the recent Midnight Fantasies examples are only the tip of the iceberg of disastrous public policy decisions spanning decades in Democrat controlled cities counties and states Due to the left sxtreme disdain for opposing views think of the New York Times s recent firing an Men of Steele Bundle editorial pageditor for publishing a well considered opposing view many of these places and almost all universities have been turned into laboratories and breeding grounds for leftist ideology and groupthinkNotice that Surowiecki s keys to good collective decision making cognitive diversity and independence of thought are about true and productive diversity in thinking The tragic Million-Dollar Nanny emphasis on cultural diversity and skin color these days contrary to Martin Luther King Jr s vision for America is in fact producing a monolithic conformity instead of true diversity invery policy area it touchesWhy do I suspect that Democrats are particularly susceptible Besides the rigid PC conformity The Millionaires Waitress Wife (The Brubaker Brides, enforced at almost all places of learning it is heart wrenching to watch the Fourth Estate surrender its traditional role of providing balanced and unbiased information and letting the consumer decide and increasingly turning into an advocacy monolith for leftist thinking As Surowiecki warns independence of opinion is both a crucial ingredient in collectively wise decisions and one of the hardest things to keep intact p39Given that rightist politicians and policy makers swim in a sea of leftist media andducational ideology and live in a society where leftist culture reigns supreme they may be less susceptible to groupthink but not immune That Republican governors tend to be better managers and make better decisions than their Democrat counterparts may stem from their freuent need to interact with big city leftist mayors On the other hand blue states tend to be uniformly blue with disastrous outcomes such as the spiraling pension debts overwhelming Illinois California and New York financesSurowiecki wrote his book prior to the great populist revolt against lites unaccountable administrative states and PC pushers and the dripping condescension they vidence towards the average JoeWhile he doesn t go as far as saying the wisdom of crowds manifests itself in The Millionaires Miracle election results which sometimes resemble markets manipulated by corruption and purveyors of bias andrroneous information including many in the media he does second Churchill s wisdom that our democratic republic system is the least bad among the optionsIn sum his thesis is a clarion call of warning about the destructive lack of wisdom of almost all of our reigning lites the Harvard faculty includedYet how finally to interpret these startling results from the higher spiritual realm The author briefly opines on such wisdom in moral matters by uoting a founding father Thomas Jefferson for one thought it likely that they xperts might be worse State a moral case to a ploughman and a professor he wrote The former will decide it as well as and often better than the latter because he has not been led astray by artificial rules p267I suspect Surowiecki intimates a better answer when discussing the hubris of Mine Under the Mistletoe experts there s little correlation between anxpert s confidence in his judgement and the accuracy of it In other words The Medicine Man experts don t know when they don t know something p278Even those with only a casual understanding of the bible know that the primordial sin the cause of Lucifer s fall was pride Many of today sxperts and politicians untethered by a sense of humility in today s fashionably anti Christian culture are so pride filled as to dismiss in the name of progress the wisdom of their fellow man as well as the wisdom of our collective history. Avioral conomics artificial intelligence military history and politics to show how this simple idea offers important lessons for how we live our lives select our leaders run our companies and think about our world.

This book begins with a bang and nds with a bang so I guess it is not too surprising that there is a bit of a whimper in the middle In some ways this book covers similar ground to other books I ve read recently particularly Fooled by Randomness The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets In fact it could be that I ve been reading far too many of this type of book recently and so they are all starting to merge into oneThe kinds of people who do tests on other people did a test in which they asked a group of people to guess how many jelly beans there were in a jar There were 850 jelly beans in the jar and the average guess was something like 875 beans This is a mere 3% out from the actual figure The interesting thing in this story is that only one individual was able to guess accurately than the group was able to guess on average That is individuals guessed randomly and badly and yet collectively their guess averaged out all of the bad guesses to such an Millionaires Dont Count (Harlequin Mini extent that the group guess was better than virtually any individual guess and given that before counting you couldn t know which was the one individual to rely on than the group going with the group actually seems like the only logical option Now isn t that a remarkably outcomeYou see it stands against a lot of our most cherished beliefs and intuitions Those are that therexist in the world Liberating Paris experts and to uote Laura Anderson Only anxpert can deal with the problem because only an The Lost Queen (Faerie Path, expert can see the problem But in factxperts often do remarkably badly at what they do To Dwell in Darkness (Duncan Kincaid Gemma James, even in their special area ofxpertise Sometimes that area of To Dwell in Darkness (Duncan Kincaid Gemma James, expertise needs to be so narrowly defined that it becomes very hard to know what uestions anxpert is actually xpert in Worse still is the fact that we are human and tend to have too high an stimation of our own The Serpent of Venice expertise Our cherished beliefs are perhaps best summed up by that uote from Nietzsche Madness of single persons is something rare but the madness of groups parties crowds seems to be the rule And there seems to be lots ofvidence of madness in groups which is of course the opposite thesis to that put forward in this book There is a discussion in this book for Marrying Winterborne (The Ravenels, example on market failures particularly bubbles and this can make crowds seem completely insane The most interestingxample in the book was a discussion on a woman in Seattle who was standing on a bridge considering whether she should commit suicide during the peak hour traffic rush hour Naturally this tended to hold up the peak hour traffic as she was being talked down by the Police But while the Police were trying to talk her down pedestrians and drivers alike both put out by this woman s antics started to call on her to kill herself uoted in the book as go ahead and jump bitch The crowd finally won and the woman did jump Now it would seem hard to argue that there was a lot of wisdom in that particular crowd and Nietzsche would seem to have a rather large chalk mark added to his side of the board The point of this book is not to argue that crowds are always wise nor that they are always right The point is to say that crowds of people often make the best decision better than the decisions of Kiss of Surrender (Deadly Angels, even the smartest individuals in a group Not only that the group is generally a safer bet than a leader because what we are interested in when we pick leaders is not always their ability to lead us to the best of all possible futures but to perhaps look rather dashing in a pin striped suit That is the argument put forward in this book is that groups tend to do better at picking what is best for the group than individuals can and also to point out when groups are most likely to fail The jelly beanxample above is an interesting case in point Here we got a group of people to pick the number of jelly beans in a jar and they did better on average than virtually all individuals in that group at picking the number of jelly beans But the The Weirdstone of Brisingamen example getsven interesting After the group made its choice it was given another go This time they were given some additional information This information was that people should pay particular attention to the fact that there is an air gap at the top of the jar and that the jar is made out of thin plastic and not thick glass Both of these pieces of information were true but they also both pointed in the direction that would increase the magnitude of the already too high guesses the group had made Not surprisingly the new guesses now made by the group tended to be Vastarien, Vol. 1, Issue 1 (English Edition) even higher than previously and the difference between guess and number of jelly beans increased to 7% above the actual number of beansThe lessons from this are I think far reaching and profound Yes groups can be tooasily fooled particularly by Rain (Paper Gods, experts directing their attention and that the words mob and riot are not nearly as much fun if you re not in a crowd all the same I still disagree with Nietzsche Most of us as individuals are a bit nutty in one way or another we are also terribly fixed in our views In fact there are numerousxamples presented in this book to make the case that groups tend to be much rational than individualsThere is also an interesting discussion on centrally planned Winters Passage (The Iron Fey, economies and free markets One of the clear problems with the Soviet Union was it would seem that as there was no market to direct what would be produced people got bonuses for producing lots of what no one wanted It is not immediately apparent why Socialism should be diametrically opposed to free markets The notion that a Socialistconomy an The Replacement Wife economy whose stated aim is to provide what is in the best interests of society should be interested in what the members of society wants hardly seems contradictory Perhaps the dichotomy isn t something we should be swinging between socialist control market freedom With all the talk of market failures at the moment I m becoming increasingly concerned that we will be able to separate babies and bath waterI m also very interested in worker participation in their jobs For a society that spends so much time talking about the benefits of democracy we clearly don t think or rarely think that those benefits shouldxtend to the workplace And yet as is also shown in this book when democracy is Damned (Witch Hunt extended into the workplace it brings uneuivocal benefits toveryone As someone who finds much of the The Bluebird Bet (Welcome to Tall Pines exercise of power to be aboutgo than the cloak of Hot-Blooded Italians efficiency it seeks to dress itself inxtending democracy seems infinitely appealing to meTangential to this idea is something Mlynowski Teen Thriller else noted in passing in this book that often a company losing one of its long standing and valuedmployees only to be replaced by someone with less Reggie expertise actually has a positiveffect on the business This is because groups tend to be far too Switchback exclusive and to only see as valid what they already know Someone new coming into the group often gets to be the truth sayer The major recommendation in this book in its uest to really gain wisdom from groups is tonsure the group is as diverse as possible and that Marrying Marcus (Virgin Brides, everyone feels they can have a say There is uite a bit of talk about the downside of too much information particularly too much speculation on the causes of what are probably random fluctuations but in general diversity is better than homogeneity despite how much worse it might feel at the timeThe other core idea is that we should seek to doverything in our power to increase trust as when trust is lost people are much likely to act as mobs rather than crowds Again we do like to be lead but being lead often is at the cost of diversity and that is virtually never a good thingI think this book gave a compelling argument in favour of democracy however there was a long bit in the middle about American Football with lots of talk about things that went a bit like this they were in their fifth at the seven yard line and had to work out whether to play it safe and go for a field goal or take a 50% chance on and frankly I didn t follow a word of it If I ve learnt anything it is that while sporting metaphors are difficult in English they are impossible in AmericanI was particularly interesting in his defence of short selling in stock markets Nothing if not brave All the same I think he makes a rather compelling caseDespite this there were many worthwhile ideas in this book and I would highly recommend it As he walked through the xhibition that day Galton came across a weight judging competition A fat ox hade been selected and placed on display and members of a agathering crowd were lining up to place wagers on the weight of the ox Or rather they were placing wagers on what the weight of the ox would be after it had been slaughtered and dresssed For sixpence you could buy a stamped and numbered ticket where you filled in your name your address and your stimate The best guesses would receive prizes Eight hundred people tried their luck They were diverse people Many of them were butchers and farmers who were presumably If Im Found (If I Run expert at judging the weight of livestock but there were also uite a few people who had as it were no insdier knowledge of cattle Many nonxperts competed Galton wrote later in teh scientific journal Nature like those clerks and others who have no CaddyGirls expert knowledge of horses but who bet on races guided by newspapers friends and their own fancies The analogy to a democracy in which people of radically different abilities and interestsach get one vote had suggested itself to Galton immediately the average competitor was probably as well fitted for making a just stimate of the dressed weight of the ox as an average voter is of judging the merits of most political issues on which he votes he wroteGalton was interested in figureing out what the average voter was capable of because he wanted to prove that the average voter was capable of very little So he turned the competition into an inpromptu xperiment When the contest was over and the rpizes had been awarded Galton borrowed the tickets from the organizers and ran a series of statisitcal tests on them Galton arranged the guesses Which totaled 787 in all after he had to discard thirteen because they were illegible in order to from highest to lowest and graphed them to see if htey would from a bell curve Then among other things he added all the contestents stimates and calculated the mean of the group s guesses That number represented you could say the collective wisdom of the Plymouth crowd If the crowd were a single person that was how much it would guessed the ox weighedGalton undoubtedly thought that the average guess of the group would be way off the mark After all mix a few very smart people with some mediocre people and a lot of dumb people and it seems likely you d nd up with a dumb answer But Galton was wrong The crowd had guessed that the ox after it had been slaughtered and dressed would weigh 1197 pounds After it had been slaughtered and dressed the ox weighed 1198 pounds In other words the crowd s judgment was ssentially perfect Perhaps breeding did not mean so much after all Galton wrote later The result seems creditable to the trustworthiness of a democratic judgment than might have been xpected That was to say the least an understatement p XII XIIIUnder the right circumstancesm groups are remarkably intelligent and are often smarter than teh smartest people in them Groups do not need to be dominated by The Spirituality Revolution exceptionally intelligent people in order to be smart Even if most of the people within a group are notspecially well informed or rational it can still reach a collectively wise decision p XIIIFirst they put a single person on a street courner and had him look up at an Comptia Cysa+ Cybersecurity Analyst Certification Bundle (Exam Cs0-001) empty sky for sixty seconds A tiny fraction of the passions pes stopped to see what the guy was looking at but most just walked past Next time around the psychologists put five skyward looking men on teh corner This time four times as many people stopped to gaze at thempty sky When the psycholgists put fifteen men on the corner 45 percent of all passersby stopped and increasin the cohort of observers yet again made than 80 percent of peds tilt their heads and look up p 43Wordly wisdom teaches that it is better for reputation to fail conventionally than to succeed unconventionally JOHN MAYNARD KEYNES p 51In a cascade people s decisions are not made independently but are profoundly influenced in some cases Economies and Cultures even determined by those around them p 57One key to a successful group decision is getting people to pay much less attention to whatveryone Designing with Web Standards else is saying p 65Decentralization s great strength is that itncourages independence and specialization on the one hand while still allowing people to coordinate their activites and solve difficult problems on the other Decentralization great weakness is that there s no guarentee that valuable information which is uncoverd in one part of the system will find its way through the rest of the system p 71Ultimatum Game which is perhaps the most well known Sadies Surrender (Oyster Harbor, experiment in behavioralconomics p 112Talkativeness may seem like a curious thing to worry about but in fact talkativness has a major impact on the kinds of decision small grouops reach If you talk a lot in a group people will tend to think of you as influential almost by default Talkative people are not necessarily well like by other members of the group but they are listened to And talkativenss feeds on itself Studies of group dynamics almost always show that the someone talks the he is talked to by others in the group So people at the center of the goup tend to become important over teh course of teh discussion p 187Instead of assuming that all problems need to filtered up the hierarchy and Structure Of The Nucleus every solution filtered back down again companies should sart with assumption that just as in the marketplace peple with local knoweldge are often best positioned to come up with a workable andfficient solution The virtues of specialization adn d local knoweldge often outweight managerial First Anthology expertise in decision making p 212found that the in the best companies Employees and managers werempowered to make many independent decisions and urged to seek out ways to improve company operations including their own p 212THe responsiblity people have In this fascinating book New Yorker business columnist James Surowiecki Releasing The Power Within Through Spiritual Dynamics explores a deceptively simple idea Large groups of people are smarter than anlite few no matter how brilliant better at solving problems fos.

Or tehir own Passage Through Crisis environments thengaged they will be p 212The idea of the wisdom of crowds is not that a group will always give you teh right answer but that on average it will consistently come up with a better asnwer than any individual could provide p 235 conditions that make a group intelligent independence diversity private judgement p 244 In collective decision making it doesnt matter when an individual makes a mistake As long as the group is diverse and independent Science, Technology and Culture enough therrors people make The Road to Einsteins Relativity effictevely cancel themselves out leaving you with the knoweldge that the group has p 278 One of our VPs asked if I had read this and would recommend it for our company s global book club I said no but jokingly added that I could read it tonight and let her know tomorrow She didn t realize I was joking sonow I m reading it tonightSometimes these things happen This book does get dry at times but it has a lot of information in it What I particularly liked about it is that it referenced all kinds of studies This is not a book of opinions or a representation of a speaker s presentation in book form this is a book aggregating research and theories done on the subject of crowds and decisions over the years There are also pages of notes in the back if anyone would like to do further researchI believe the intent here is to be a cross between a Malcolm Gladwell and Freakonomics but it s not uite as accessible as they are Some of the negative reviews said this read like someone s thesis paper I wouldn t go that far but I see where they re coming fromThe theme of the book is that crowds when they re the right type of crowds perform better than individualsven very smart individuals He goes through a bunch of Black Boy examples when crowds were wise the average guess of the weight of the pig was very close to its actual sports betting Linux and when they were wrong the Challengerxplosion the Columbia disaster the Bay of Pigs He then talks about what characteristics makes crowds wise That boils down to diversity of opinion independence decentralization and aggregationDiversity of opinion Collective decisions are only wise when they incorporate lots of different information If Nighttime Sweethearts everyone thinks the same way and has the same background a crowd will be no smarter than an individual The individuals in the crowd need to bring their ownxperiences and knowledge to be Maternity Bride (Silhouette Desire effectiveIndependence When one person makes a prediction after hearing other people s first this can affect the outcome and cause a cascadeffect The problem he says starts when people s decision are not made all at once but rather in seuencePeople fall in line because they believe they re learning something important from the Safe in My Arms example of othersafter a certain point it becomes rational for people to stop paying attention to their own knowledge their private information and to start looking instead at the actions of others and imitate them Decentralization The virtues of decentralization are twofold On the one hand the responsibility people have for their ownnvironments the Presunta colpevole engaged they will beThe second thing decentralization makesasier is coordination Instead of having to make constant resort to orders and threads companies can rely on workers to find new Poisoned Secrets (Murder and Mayhem efficient ways of getting things done Aggregation Crowds are useless if the diverse opinions are not aggregated in some way This is often the downfall of decentralization Decentralization s great weakness is that there s no guarantee that valuable information which is uncovered in one part of the system will find its way through the rest of the system All in all worth reading Maybe don t try to do it overnight Injoyed this book I wrote a review and then read Safe Words everyonelse s review and decided to return to write something to the point Some people did not His To Claim (McBain Brothers Alpha, even finish the book so I d like highlight a few important concepts Surowiecki was trying to communicateThe fourssential conditions that make up a smart or wise crowd are Diversity of OpinionEach person must have some private information that heshe brings to the group Their own interpretation or their own understanding of the problem space or a related problem space IndependencePeople hold to their own reasoning to some degree DecentralizationIndividuals are able to specialize and draw on their local knowledge Someone is going to be closest to a certain aspect of the problem space and this is what is meant by local knowledge AggregationThe means to synthesize the thoughts of the team in to a collective decisionAll four need to be met in order for the crowd to be wise If you The Black Sheeps Baby (Into The Heartland) (Into The Heartland) (Silhouette Intimate Moments, experience in life has been that crowds are dumb changes are one of these four conditions were missingIn order to reorient yourself to what Surowiecki is saying it may reuire anntirely new framing of your world and some are just not willing to do thatThe book is fantastic and reuired reading for people in a leadership position The Wisdom of Crowds is not an argument against Pursuit of Justice experts but against ourxcessive faith in the single individual decision maker I think there are two big problems with relying on a single individual no matter how well informed The first is that true Dangerous to Touch experts that is the real titans are surprisingly hard to identifyThe second and important problem is thatven brilliant Once Upon a Seduction (Its All About Attitude experts have biases and blind spots and so they make mistakes And what s troubling is that in general they don t know when they re making those mistakes James Surowiecki This book takes a good look at the theory of Collective Intelligence which is defined as the shared wisdom or intelligencemerging from the collaboration and cooperation of individuals Through numerous anecdotes and discussing several Rodeo Daughter experiments the author highlights the situations where the crowd came up with answers at least as g Really the best way to review this book is to just star it right I ve read James Surowiecki in the New Yorker I ve generallynjoyed his articles and found them fairly informative and My Guilty Pleasure (Harlequin Blaze engaging I think that perhaps he should stick to that writing articles This book was well disappointing And I suspect that it s because Ixpect from a book I Fatal Secrets (Protecting the Witnesses expect an analysis that is balanced and rigorous While I am willing to accept a little grandstanding in an article I find it intolerable in a book What s ironic about all of this is that he s written a book celebrating diversity of thought but there s absolutely none of that in this book I thought that there were some interesting anecdotes ideas and bits of information here but that ultimately all the pieces did not gel into a whole Not only was the sum of the information not than its parts I actually thought it was less The book also had problems for me in a number of key areas that totally detracted from any regard I might have had for it Pet Peeve 1 It s damned annoying when something is misrepresented It makes me wonder whatlse is being misrepresented that I can t pick up because I don t know what I don t know He totally misrepresented Keynes in a number of ways uoting him out of context He uotes Keynes s statement Worldly wisdom teaches that it is better for reputation to fail conventionally than to succeed unconventionally as if Keynes supported that statement The full uote by Keynes is this an investor who proposes to ignore near term market fluctuations will in practice come in for most criticism wherever investment funds are managed by committees or boards or banks For it is in the A Wanted Man (Silhouette Intimate Moments, essence of his behaviour that he should beccentric unconventional and rash in the My Spy (Mission: Impassioned, eyes of average opinion If he is successful that will only confirm the general belief in his rashness and if in the short run he is unsuccessful which is very likely he will not receive much mercy Worldly wisdom teaches that it is better for reputation to fail conventionally than to succeed unconventionally Keynes is actually praising the long term investor but stating how hard it is to not simply follow the crowd This is the opposite of what Surowiecki uses him for He later uotes Keynes s statement about the stock market Professional investment may be likened to those for newspaper competitions in which competitors have to pick out the six prettiest faces from a hundred photographs the prize being awarded to the competitor whose choice most nearly corresponds to the average preferences of the competitors as a whole soach competitor has to pick not those faces which he himself finds prettiest but those which he thinks likeliest to catch the fancy of other competitors all of whom are looking at the problem from the same point of view He then goes on to state that that behaviour is what Keynes recommends This is not only not what Keynes recommends but what he is against The statement uoted is Keynes description of how the stock market works people speculating rather than making up their own mind based on fundamentals He then Until You Loved Me (Silver Springs, explains that this is why there are bubbles and crashes because people are simply following the herd Again the total opposite of what Surowiecki uses him forThis is prettygregious as far as I m concerned Pet Peeve 2He misrepresents facts He describes an The Baby Album experiment conducted in the late 1980s by Paul AndreassenAndreassen divided students into two groups Each group selected a portfolio of stocks and knewnough about Secret Agent Minister and Deadly Texas Rose each stock to come up with what seemed like a fair price for it Then Andreassen one group to see only the changes in the prices of their stocks They could buy and sell if they wanted but all they knew was whether the price of a stock had gone up or down The second group was allowed to see the changes in price but was also given a constant stream of financial news that supposedlyxplained what was happening Surprisingly the less well informed group did far better than the group that was given all the news the students who had access to the news overreacted The students who could look only at the stock s price had no choice but to concentrate on the fundamentals that they had used to pick their stocks to begin withThe thing is financial information is Why Not Tonight (Happily Inc., exactly what the fundamentals are supposed to be Thentire idea behind financial information is that you know what is happening to the company and hence what its future prospects are rather than being in dark and just speculating He then goes on to say The problem of putting too much weight on a single piece of information is compounded when Her First Mother (Conveniently Wed, everyone in the market is getting that information Groups are only smart when there is a balance between the information thatveryone in the group shares and the information that Welcome Home, Cowboy (Wed In The West, each of the members of the group holds privately You know what we call it when people trade shares on information thatach of the members of the group holds privately It s called insider trading The solution to the problem of the market overreacting is not to disclose less information It s to nforce a trading halt when an important piece of information is to be announced so that the market has time to digest the information The annoying thing is that I m sure he knows this It just doesn t make for very interesting reading Pet Peeve 3He draws sweeping conclusions from cherry picked xamples His book looks at the following vents 1 The rise of the petrol driven car at a time when other alternatives like a steam ngine car and an lectric car were also commercially available alternatives 2 The fad for wooden tracks instead of asphalt roads which ventually turned out to be a huge mistake The first incident is cited as an Gilligan Unbound example of the genius of the market The second one is cited as an instance when the market got it wrong Why and when does a crowd get it wrong He gives twoxplanations A crowd gets things wrong when there is an information cascade People don t make up their own minds they depend on other people for information A crowd is best at making decisions when it is presented with choices How Gone for Soldiers exactly it is that the firstxample differs in a material way from the other one is never really supported with hard researched facts There were choices in both the xamples of the car and the wooden tracks And in both cases the standard had a champion that went around hard selling his alternative Anyone remember the war between Betamax and PAL Or between Microsoft and Apple In ach of those cases the less Mean Girls efficient standard won But you re not going to see those stories in this book He gives another story how the market is a genius at determining facts Here he relies on the Challenger disaster and its conseuence on Morton Thiokol This was the company that wasventually found responsible for the accident Of the four companies that were involved its stock went down the lowest and the fastest Moonlight and Mistletoe (Harlequin Historical, even before official conclusions as to the cause were reached This is one of his proofs that the market knows the factsven before the facts are in He also talks about Enron but as an Duty to Protect example of how a top down managed company is bad Oddly the fact that the market didn t know the facts about Enron doesn t come up Here s a final one He talks about how people on the street are able to move smoothly along as anxample of the crowd being intelligent Several chapters down he talks about how traffic can snarl up and we can get stuck in jams But really in terms of fluid dynamics there s no difference between one and the other Worse he omits The Surprise Triplets (Safe Harbor Medical examples of situations when there are too many people on a crowded street and a panic just starts for no reason a stampede arises and people die Pet Peeve 4 The fact is that he doesn t really say anything terribly insightful Decisions are better made when we take into account all the facts and listen to divergent views that present various perspectives Following other people is useful sometimes other times it s disastrous Well du huhhh dude More annoying to me is when he says banal things that are wrongThe banal but key point I m trying to make is that the important the decision the less likely a cascade is to take hold To translate that he s saying that when we have to make important decisions we tend to listen to other people less and rely on our own judgment Really Tell that to the people who sunk their life savings into Savings Loans into internet stocks into mortgages they. Tering innovation coming to wise decisionsven predicting the futureWith boundless rudition and in delightfully clear prose Surowiecki ranges across fields as diverse as popular culture psychology ant biology beh.

James Surowiecki ✓ 3 review

The Wisdom of Crowds EBOOK NEW

A staff writer at The New Yorker since 2000 and writes The Financial Page He came to The New Yorker from Slate where he wrote the Moneybox column He has also been a contributing editor at Fortune and a staff writer at Talk Previously he was the business columnist for New York He has contributed to the Wall Street Journal Wired the Times Magazine the Washington Post and Lingua Franca an