By now I’m sure most of you know about Steve Fosset and how his private plane disappeared somewhere in Nevada on September 4. So, what can you do about it? You can help find him by reviewing satellite images and marking them as either having ‘something of interest’ or ‘nothing of interest.’ The images that get marked as ‘something of interest’ will be forwarded to a team of experts for a more in-depth review.
How do you review these images? Go to Amazon’s Mechanical Turk to begin reviewing the images. The Amazon Mechanical Turk allows humans to help accomplish a task (here’s a more detailed description), which is a very interesting way to harness the collective intelligence of humans.
Some interesting info on how Amazon got these satellite images: Google purchased 6,000 square miles of satellite imagery, at the request of Richard Branson (Steve Fosset is a friend of Branson’s), from one of the two companies they purchase satellite photos for their Maps and Earth products. The cost for these images: $100,000.
Now, let’s all hope Steve Fosset is found soon – whether the Amazon Turk site contributes to it or not.