The UX industry is still growing and finding its feet, but by now we have a pretty decent set of standards and practices that most people agree on. One of these is team size. I think almost everybody agrees that a small team is best, with a lot of communication.
I'd like to know whether any work has been done on adapting these methods to scaling up to huge team sizes. Open source products have succeeded in competing with closed source software largely because they can count on a large number of volunteer programmers, and they have their tools scaled up to allow collaboration between so many people. Unfortunately, they often fall behind in design matters, because traditional design doesn't seem to work in a crowd-sourced context. Whenever open source software does succeed in getting a decent design, it's because they hire a designer, who will then dictate a design (usually causing friction).
I'm curious if there are any projects where people have attempted to get the community more involved, particularly getting them to do some of the design work. Everybody can only donate a little time, but the sum total of time is vast. Can we channel all those little efforts into a quality design? My interpretation of most UX tactics is that they are about communicating the ideas and issues behind a design, so that everybody can get involved at their own level without arguing about the minutiae. I feel like it should scale, if you do it smartly.
One example I know of is the UX redesign of Drupal 7. Leisa Reichelt and Mark Boulton functioned as lead designers, but they really tried to rally the community, and involved them both by communicating their intermediate results, and by getting them to do micro-tests. I don't know that it was as successful as they hoped, but it was an interesting experiment. Can you think of any other examples?