Reinventing discovery

Sabine Hossenfelder reviews a recent book by Michael Nielsen, Reinventing Discovery: The New Era of Networked Science.

Collective intelligence, Michael argues, works by bringing together many people's "microexpertise," that is a specialized knowledge in a specific area. New software can tell them when their microexpertise is needed and where and how they can add their contribution. To that end, it is preferable if problems are brought into a modular structure, so that parts can be tackled independently. Suitable tools, some of which already exist, then allow scientists to scale up collaborations, helping them solve problems much faster, wasting less time and effort. These are exciting developments for every scientist that promise to make scientific research smoother, faster and less frustrating.