Thanks to Ian for flagging up this story. It seems the US Patent office is turning to croudstorming to help them overcome the problem of dealing with so many appolications with too few inspeectors. Just a pilot project at this stage but plenty of heavy weights (Microsoft, Oracle, Linux Red Hat and Intel) already on board.
It seems the ‘croudstorming’ will act as an initial filter deciding which applications make it through the over worked inspectors. Ian’s post goes into far more detail but i think this is one of the best applications of croudsourcing i’ve seen to date.