The Amazon Mechanical Turk, “artificial artificial intelligence,” is named after a famous hoax. The Amazon version is a way for programmers to assign work to people in “Human Intelligence Tasks.” This is for programs that need people’s judgment for something.
The current tasks are for Amazon’s search engine, A9, which has a service called Blockview – pictures of street intersections. Human intelligence is needed to pick the best street pictures from those taken by drivers with a GPS and digital camera. These are included in their Yellow Pages. This pays $0.03 per selected picture.
A more mundane application is from Amazon.com itself. They pay $0.02 to identify the artists off scans of CD albums.
These “house” applications should later be joined by other companies who want to outsource human intelligence to routine tasks. These can easily be done by Pinoys seeking income opportunities, and are more credible than “get paid to read email” or “get paid to surf” programs. They have an actual output. The payment is credited to your Amazon account so it can be used to purchase merchandise. I don’t know if Pinoys can encash it since the option is for a bank transfer.
So, is Amazon really The Matrix?