Collaborative Intelligence

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A-PR Hypothesis

complementarity needed for
collaborative intelligence

Subjectivity – our diverse
POVs and interpretations

Objectivity – the facts of
the world we interpret



American Geophysical Union
American Geological Inst.

Charles Darwin's papers
Desert Research Institute
Global Science Gateway

Historical Maps
James Lovelock
Microbes–Mind Forum
Planet Innovation
Scripps Institute for

USGS - Earth Explorer
USGS - Search

von Ahn on Human

AI Conferences
Animating Time Data
Climate Collab
Darwin papers
Do Some Good
EO Wilson Foundation
Geo-tagger's World Atlas
Howe on Crowdsourcing
Innovation Networks
Kelly - Hivemind
Kirschner Lab
London Open Street Map
Los Alamos – Symbiotic
Mechanical Turk
MIT Center for
Collective Intelligence

Recommender Systems
SETI @ Home
Turner Fieldwork
Vinge on Singularity
Wall Street Journal

Bert Holldobler and EO Wilson Superorganism

Robert Ulanowicz - A Third Window: Natural Life Beyond Newton and Darwin
Robert Ulanowicz
A Third Window

Paul Ehrlich Humanity on a Tightrope
Ehrlich - Humanity
on a Tightrope

Kevin Kelly What Technology Wants
Kelly – What
Technology Wants

Robert Axelrod Evolution of Cooperation
Axelrod – Evolution
of Cooperation

Robert Axelrod Complexity of Cooperation
Axelrod – Complexity
of Cooperation

Paul Ehrlich Humanity on a Tightrope Kevin Kelly What Technology Wants
Hansen, Schneiderman, Smith - Analyzing Social Networks with NodeXL

Hansen, Schneiderman,
Smith – Analyzing Social
Networks - Node XL

J Scott Turner The Tinkerer's Accomplice J Scott Turner The Extended Organism Jerry Fodor & Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini - What Darwin Got Wrong Jerry Fodor & Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini - What Darwin Got Wrong Marc Kirschner and John Gerhart - The Plausibility of Life Eva Jablonka and Marion Lamb Evolution in Four Dimensions Mary Jane West Eberhard Developmental Plasticity and Evolution Derek Hansen, Ben Schneiderman, and Marc Smith - AnalyzIng Social Networks with Node XL Derek Hansen, Ben Schneiderman, and Marc Smith - AnalyzIng Social Networks with Node XL

Earth Systems

collaborative intelligence | cross-disciplinary decision systems

We are drowning in information, while starving for wisdom. The world henceforth will be run by synthesizers, people able to put together the right information at the right time, think critically about it, and make choices wisely.

E.O. Wilson


James Lovelock is considered the founder of Earth Systems Science; his struggle to get the concept of Earth as a superorganism, a system of co-dependent, co-evolving systems, met with resistance when first proposed over forty years ago as "the Gaia Hypothesis."

This page focuses on the overlap of Earth Systems Science and collaborative intelligence, emphasizing the need for systemic approaches to global problem-solving, to be able to apply the old dictum to "act locally" such that local actions together achieve global impact. While energy-saving technologies are continually being developed, our greatest challenge is to decision support.

The Superorganism Concept is an instructive perspective on the "society of mind" and the prospect of collaborative intelligence. From termite colonies to the Internet as a global brain, to Earth and its biosphere, the superorganism concept is attracting research interest across a range of domains. Harvard Biologists Bert Hölldobler and EO Wilson in Superorganism, about which he speaks briefly here, explore the implications of this concept. When their article, "The Superorganism Goes Mainstream" in 2008, Wired Science claimed they got there first. Although many scientists had been there for a long time, Wired deserves credit for highlighting a range of important perspectives on this topic:

Forty years earlier James Lovelock encountered substantial resistance to his formulation of the Gaia Hypothesis showed that the Earth and its biosphere can be viewed as an integrated, coherently functioning organism. At first his hypothesis was met with resistance, then disbelief, and later aroused debate. Although it appeared plausible, based on observing Earth’s unique atmospheric behavior, because his hypothesis was based solely on observation, Lovelock couldn’t prove it. He sought ways to confirm the Gaia Hypothesis, refining it to focus on how life on Earth might regulate its atmosphere to make it suitable for life on Earth.


bees - superorganism


Practical Applications. From non-living cellular automata, left, to bees, above, to mapping attributes of the biosphere, rules govern effective coordination of systems.

Sustainability is the optimisation of tradeoffs to maximise environmental stewardship within the context of project planning priorities and, as defined by the Brundtland Commission, “the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”


diagram of levels of phytoplankton in the global biosphere







©2011 Zann Gill Please attribute, linking to this site.
: webmaster at collaborative-intelligence. org

Image of Bees. Courtesy
Wired Science.

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