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TED Curator Chris Anderson on Crowd Accelerated Innovation

TED Curator Chris Anderson on Crowd Accelerated Innovation–This is a fascinating article in Wired about how sharing information sparks innovation. (h/t Matt Bynum). A few excerpts:

When we decided to post TED talks free on the web four years ago, something unexpected happened: Speaker behavior changed. Specifically, they started spending more time preparing for the talks. The slots are 18 minutes long, but in many cases the speakers had crammed weeks or even months of preparation into those 18 minutes.

… So in [the] TED talks, an upward spiral of improvement was taking place, prompted by the use of online video. This seemed an interesting phenomenon, and suddenly I started seeing more examples wherever I looked. I couldn’t find a name for it anywhere, so I began thinking of it as Crowd Accelerated Innovation. But what is that, exactly? Does it have implications for the way we work? Will it affect the future of how we learn?

Yes—and yes. I believe that the arrival of free online video may turn out to be just as significant a media development as the arrival of print. It is creating new global communities, granting their members both the means and the motivation to step up their skills and broaden their imaginations. It is unleashing an unprecedented wave of innovation in thousands of different disciplines: some trivial, some niche in the extreme, some central to solving humanity’s problems. In short, it is boosting the net sum of global talent. It is helping the world get smarter.

… The true significance of online video has been mischaracterized and underreported.

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