Electronic media have unlocked a hitherto largely untapped potential for swarm intelligence (SI; generally, the realisation that group living can facilitate solving cognitive problems that go beyond the capacity of single animals) in humans with relevance for areas such as company management, prediction of elections, product development and the entertainment industry. SI is a rapidly developing topic that has become a hotbed for both innovative research and wild speculation. Here, we tie together approaches from seemingly disparate areas by means of a general definition of SI to unite SI work on both animal and human groups. Furthermore, we identify criteria that are important for SI to operate and propose areas in which further progress with SI research can be made.
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