The Wisdom of Crowds

Houses Wisdom of Crowds

I don’t know how many of you are avid “House” viewers, but I came across this episode a few days after our last Thursday’s class.  The title of the episode is called “Epic Fail” and is based around the wisdom of crowds.  In the episode a game producer falls ill and is sent to House, a specialist (who really specializes in witty remarks and a lack of emotional attachment to anything) to try and cure him.  But, the producer starts blogging his symptoms on the Internet where regular people, not experts, respond with possible cures.  He then makes House and his team test him for any diagnoses that were blogged.  What I found most compelling was that at the end of the episode, one of House’s team members cures the game producer based on a suggestion she had seen on the blog.

Being that this episode perfectly relates to our class discussion, I could not help but mention it in my blog post.  I think the episode shows how powerful the opinions of many really can be, rather than a few experts.  The fact that House works with a team who brain storms possible diagnoses is also displaying a wisdom of crowds effect because each team member has different levels of skill.  Although most episodes end with a simple diagnosis—a bad piece of cheese or a bug bite, this episode in particular displays how the opinions of non-experts can be used to save lives.

I tried to find the episode to post but apparently it’s been removed from YouTube because of copyright.  But again if anyone is interested the episode is from season 6 and called “Epic Fail.”

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