back to article Human hive-mind game whups computer boffinry ass

Most Reg readers are familiar with the idea of ordinary laypersons contributing computer time to academic research, in distributed computing projects such as SETI@Home. But it turns out that in some kinds of science, human brainpower - not that of trained boffins, but everyday people - can be a much more valuable resource, and …


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  1. Lionel Baden


    When can blow that shit up with C4 or stick a knife in its back ...

    Motar strike would be usefull too ......

    Mebbe i play bfbc2 to much :D

    *nade for obvious reasons

  2. Disco-Legend-Zeke

    The Human Eye...

    ...does not send a bitmap to the brain. The three bitmaps generated by the rods (Y) and two types of cones (I and Q) are enhanced and correlated beginning at the sensors themselves, and further decoded along the optic nerve into values like "circleness" "squareness" "nearness" even "faceness" before they reach the visual areas. Just the kind of information needed to solve folding problems.

    Because these analyses are so very compute intense when attempted with linear processing, the slow (~44Hz) but massively parallel human eye/brain has a speed advantage.

    It is interesting to note the similarities in the human hearing system, transcoding sound from the pressure domain and transmitting a frequency analysis to the brain.

  3. Rob 30

    Site off-line

    i was looking forward to beating a few amino's into submission for the good of humanity but it looks like the site's screwed.

    did you let them know you might be sending a few people their way ElReg?

  4. Mystic Megabyte Silver badge

    Golden Wonder

    Maybe they can use this research to find out why morons fold their crisp packets into neat little triangles before throwing them on the ground.

    Mines got pockets full of all the snack wrappers that I pick up whilst walking.

  5. ~mico

    So, we can be more than just batteries?

    Mine is the one with no spoon in the pocket.

    1. The Indomitable Gall

      Crisp packet triangles

      Folded crisp packets take up less bin space.

      ....but only if they're put in the bin.

      1. Mr Young
        Thumb Up

        and... the very least you'd be hard pushed to find a moron that can fold crisp packets.

      2. Anonymous Coward

        false rubbish economy soon to be give us ur rubbish back

        If everybody would clean after themselves we would have milions of unemployed "Cleaning Industiy" workers and if they go out to the streets to strike what then ?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Thumb Down

          You think? Greasy hand and head prints on windows.

          Arseprints of those who have yet to master the intricacies of the bogroll; The results of experiments combining alcoholic beverages, strange foods and motion; lip prints on mirrors (You might consider girls: What other cloths occupy my apron pockets?); feminine hygiene products that outdo the offal bin at a tuna cannery; and chewing gum anywhere and everywhere.

          The absence of neatly folded crisp packets on the floors of my trains and forced into gaps with what generally seems to have been a caulking pick would be a very nice start thankyou very much.

          We got more than plenty to do, just dealing with the scuffs, drips, fluff and grit of everyday patronage. Dicks who think that we're there to pick up after them are what makes the difference between clean and gleam.

  6. Eddy Ito Silver badge

    origami eloquence?

    "human brains can open up a can of whup-ass on the many powerful supercomputers"

    That should give the massive hoard of digicritters something to ponder as they bide their time! Nicely done Lewis, ROTM put off until the machines can figure out how to make a swan from a napkin.

  7. Allan George Dyer Silver badge

    Infinite Monkeys?

    It's reasonable that we, a species that evolved swinging through trees, can analyse a complicated branching structure quickly, but perhaps our close cousins that have more recent brachiating practice would be even better?

    Cancel that Shakespeare re-write, and get the monkeys onto it!

    Mine's the one with the loose sleeves.

  8. Mips
    Jobs Halo

    Mind hive is not new

    It is over 20 years ago I was introduced to a mind hive bidding process for contracts. The strange thing is that it can produce better results than bidding by calculation and is somewhat faster. The process involves each individual in the team guessing the price, secretly, the prices are all opened and the results discussed, no one is to say what their price is. There is a second and third iteration, by this time the prices are very close. The average is taken. The process is called ESP. Not surprisingly.

    1. Andrew the Invertebrate

      Hive mind or group think?

      If you averaged the each of the steps, each average is probably not that different. What will be reduced is the standard deviation from the group average, with people who gave values at the extremes shifting thier expectaions\guesses to more closely match the herd.

      If you had one of extremely high bids, but didn't change it after the second or third itteration it would just be dissmissed as being the product of someone who was clearly out of touch with the group consensous, was unable to compromise & wouldn't listen to reason.

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