WinterMilestone 1 raymondsums

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Template for your submission for Winter Milestone 1. Do not edit this directly - instead, make a new page at WinterMilestone 1 YourTeamName or whatever your team name is, and copy this template over. You can view the source of this page by clicking the Edit button at the top-right of this page, or by clicking here.

Experience the life of a Worker on Mechanical Turk

Reflect on your experience as a worker on Mechanical Turk. What did you like? What did you dislike? If you're from outside the USA and unable to access MTurk, try try the worker sandbox, or other sites like CrowdFlower or Microworkers or Clickworker.

I like how many of the tasks are quite easy and do not require much expertise. The tasks are also quite fun to do, some of them will benefit a real research study so some tasks can be quite meaningful to do. I dislike some of the terminologies used - for example, HITs. For someone completely new to Mechanical Turk, they might not know what these terms mean. I also dislike how the interface is laid out for the users. I have some difficulties locating the button to accept HITs from the list view. Next, I dislike the reward or pay for each tasks completed. Many of the tasks do not seem worthwhile to do because the payout is very low. A worker on Mechanical Turk may not even get to the hourly minimum wage if they are located in the US. There also needs to be a better way to discover tasks or a better way to queue tasks so that no time is wasted after each completed task and worker can proceed onto the next task upon completion of current one.

Experience the life of a Requester on Mechanical Turk

Reflect on your experience as a requester on Mechanical Turk. What did you like? What did you dislike? Also attach the CSV file generated when you download the HIT results. If you're from outside the USA and unable to access MTurk, you can try the MTurk requester sandbox, or CrowdFlower or Microworkers or Clickworker

It is quite easy to create HITs on Mechanical Turk, they have templates for you to pick from, thus saving you time. I like the feeling that someone is helping you with the tasks and it is fun to watch the assignment being completed on the results page (and it auto-refreshes too). It is difficult to create have custom tasks done on Mechanical Turk. Not all types of tasks are suitable for Mechanical Turk or they will take a lot of effort to make it work.

Explore alternative crowd-labor markets

Compare and contrast the crowd-labor market you just explored (TaskRabbit/oDesk/GalaxyZoo) to Mechanical Turk.

I prefer Mechanical Turk to oDesk because you get to start on the HITs right away after accepting. This creates a better flow for the workers. oDesk allows you to bid a price which can give workers a higher amount of money per task, but worker need to also consider the time wasted between bidding and accepting, before they can start working on a task.

Readings

MobileWorks

  • What do you like about the system / what are its strengths?

Allowing citizens of countries with lower income to be able to participate in the crowdsourcing marketplace. Often they do not have access to computers due to its high cost. With MobileWorks, they can partake due to the lower barrier of entry to hardware with Internet access. These workers will likely be more dedicated workers because this could be their only source of income.

  • What do you think can be improved about the system?

As smartphone comes down in price, I think more can be achieved from crowdsourcing tools such as MobileWorks. Requesters can then post more complex tasks for crowdsourcing. At the moment, the tasks performed by workers seems to be limited to the controls of the phone's keypad and the low resolution screens.

Daemo

  • What do you like about the system / what are its strengths?

I like the implementation of Boomerang, a bilateral rating system into the crowdsourcing marketplace. Often times, discovery of jobs that the worker want to work or show interest in is difficult. Cutting down on time spent searching can be used more productively working and completing tasks. Likewise, requesters can rate and rank workers that they prefer thus giving preferred workers priority to view the tasks posted. It is a win-win scenario, by protecting both the worker and the requester, and definitely improve upon the overall experience.

  • What do you think can be improved about the system?

It will be a better user experience for the worker if there is a system in place that utilizes the data from Boomerang and creates an auto-generated task queues. For example, the worker sets a block of time of how long he wants to work today or how much he aims to earn today, and the software will then generate the worker's tasks based on those inputs. Worker can start working and upon completing the task he/she worked on, will be automatically assigned to a new task. If the worker dislikes the task, he/she can skip the task and move on to the following task. Think of a online music playlist like Pandora or Songza that is automatically generated based upon your preferences versus selecting a new song every time a song ends or having to manually select your own playlist.

This will help tremendously with the worker's flow when they work.

Flash Teams

  • What do you like about the system / what are its strengths?

I like the idea of using technology to create teams of experts that can quickly scale up and down depending on the needs of the problem they are trying to solve. It is more efficient and people can get more things done quickly.

  • What do you think can be improved about the system?

Communication is very important, especially for larger teams. It is hard to get everybody on the same page because there is always a lot of data and information that gets generated when there is a large team. Therefore, the team may not be very efficient if not everybody is on the same page. Although the reading did suggest, DRIs and breaking down the task into milestones, I think there needs to be a better way for the system to communicate effectively.

Milestone Contributors

Slack usernames of all who helped create this wiki page submission: @raymondsums