Urban commuters have long trusted the traffic helicopter as their primary source of traffic information. Then, in 2008, Waze allowed drivers to report slowdowns, accidents, and even speed traps — and the traffic reporter was rendered obsolete.
In 2019, the crowd drives much more than demand. “Network effects” — or the idea that the value of a product or service increases exponentially as its user base grows — impact every facet of our lives today. Ride- and home-sharing services are industry standards, and we now crowdsource everything from recipes to baby names.
As new technologies capitalize on the crowd, our interdependence is moving from convenience to necessity.