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Amazon say this service "solves the problem of building applications that until now have not worked well because they lack human intelligence. Humans are much more effective than computers at solving some types of problems, like finding specific objects in pictures, evaluating beauty, or translating text. The idea of the Amazon Mechanical Turk web service is to give developers a programmable interface to a network of humans to solve these kinds of problems and incorporate this human intelligence into their applications."
It's an API for cheap labour, I think - the sort of people who fill in questionnaires for marketeers and act as test shoppers.
The FAQ contains the lovely sentence:"Amazon Mechanical Turk provides a web services API for computers to integrate "artificial, artificial intelligence" directly into their processing by making requests of humans."
In other words, turning AI on its head?
Just sometimes you read something that makes you realise how late it is and how you really need to go to bed.