I understood the concept of the power(and sometimes but not always the wisdom) of crowds with Wikipedia, ratings, and the like, but one of the big themes that hit me at TED last week was how community creation is moving to new and powerful levels.
The first example was composer Eric Whitacre and the virtual choir he created. When he took the stage I was ambivalent, but when I heard the energy and sincerity, individual by individual, tears were streaming down my face. His full TED talk, which included more stories about individuals who participated, is not released yet, but this short video from his website briefly explains the virtual choir project.
Turn up your speakers and enlarge the video frame for this one...
Beautiful. It astounds me how such powerful connection can be achieved through technology.