"Abilene" is the Texas city in the Abilene paradox. It refers to the retelling by Harvey of a lousy decision by his family. On a hot summer day, the family piled into a car without airconditioning and drove too many to Abilene to try a new diner. The heat was oppressive; the food was lousy. But no one dared to speak in those terms until later that night back home. Finally, the matriarch of the family broke the silence by complaining about the food. Then everyone chimed in with their complaint--the car was hot, it was stupid to try an unknown restaurant. It turns out that no one wanted to go in the first place, but no one said so when it mattered. Eventually, they all blamed the father for suggesting the drive.
- The Abilene Paradox
The use of the terms "collective intelligence" or "superorganism" and the analogy between web learning techniques and the way ant colonies lay out a network of trails may invite the comparison of the GB with a "hive mind", that is, a collective in which the members all think and behave the same, lacking any autonomy or personal identity. This frightening prospect is most vividly illustrated by the "Borg", the race of cyborgs imagined by the creators of the science fiction series "Star Trek". The GB, on the contrary, derives its intelligence precisely from the diversity of the people that take part in it. If everybody would make the same choices, then the GB would not be smarter than a single individual.
- The Global Brain FAQ