P2 = a revolution in blogging

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As I told you the other day, I am very impressed by P2, a new interactive WordPress theme. I have not selected it for Midas Oracle (I chose WP FrameWork), but I think that P2 will influence a lot of other themes.

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What prediction markets can learn from Twitter – REDUX

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S-I-M-P-L-I-C-I-T-Y + C-U-S-T-O-M-I-Z-A-T-I-O-N

Twitter is a very simplistic core. Around that core is a whole ecosystem that adds value to Twitter. You have a large choice of &#8220-Twitter clients&#8221-, and there are plenty of websites out there that complement the basic Twitter service.

It is the anti-BetFair case. The future prediction exchanges will be built around a simplistic core, and there will be plenty of add-ons and complimentary services &#8212-all of which will be optional, so as not to scare off the newbies.

Enterprise prediction markets: Usability innovation is the answer.

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This past week, The Economist wrote on the yet-unfulfilled promise of prediction markets. At CrowdCast (ex-Xpree), we believe prediction markets are not yet mainstream because the current solutions are built on mechanisms designed for the stock market, not for the enterprise.

The stock trading metaphor works for a large, liquid stock market, but is unsuitable for enterprise forecasting. The concept of shorting and covered calls is far from intuitive for your average employee, and the stock mechanism makes it hard to ask the simplest of questions relevant for corporate forecasters. For example, buying or selling a collection of virtual stocks representing probabilities of sales falling in particular ranges is an incredibly obtuse way of asking for a single sales forecast. Finally, the stock mechanism relies on copious liquidity to ensure meaningful metrics, which is often not available with the limited crowds available in the enterprise.

However, innovation moves on and we question the assumption that prediction markets have to rely on the stock market analogy. At CrowdCast, we have been working on a new mechanism, that takes into account participant behavior and aptitude as much as market efficiency. The product we are launching in April will deliver easy, engaging, and expressive information exchanges, without the limitations of traditional notions of stock markets.

When you get the questions, incentives, and mechanism right, a prediction market can be an incredibly powerful management tool. Employees share insights anonymously and are measured and rewarded for their intelligence. Widely deployed, this has the potential to fundamentally change the nature of the organizational contract, moving from information flow based on hierarchy and silos, to enterprise-wide direct communication.

A whole new take on prediction markets- available from CrowdCast in April 2009.

Mat Fogarty

CrowdCast CEO

Cross-posted from the Xpree blog

Previously: Are collective intelligence solutions being oversold?

Why Sean Glass is no Nigel Eccles

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One simple word:



When I first tried Pikum, last year, I spent 10 minutes looking around, trying to figure out how to use their betting website. At the 11th minute, I gave up. For good.

Sean Glass is an amazing serial entrepreneur and he&#8217-ll hatch many successful ventures in the future. I am sure many angel investors will back him up, again. However, the takeaway from the Pikum failure is that your user interface should not be too original. Users are spending most of their time on other websites &#8212-so, do have a user interface that resembles what is found outside.

Let&#8217-s hope Jason Trost got that one right.

The new Hollywood Stock Exchange website (recently redesigned) sucks as much as an indigestible fruit cake.

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HSX-sucks.com &#8212- I predict that somebody will soon register this domain name.

Many HSX event derivative traders have complained to me privately about the website redesign: they hate it more than they hate the recent financial bailout. One HSX trader went off on the Prediction Markets group discussion area at LinkedIn. Today, another HSX trader is writing a long prosecution of the HSX website redesign. Read it in all, and spot the many comments at the bottom, from fellow HSX traders.

The root of the problem is Alex Costakis &#8212-the director of HSX. My assessment of him is that he doesn&#8217-t get the Web. He is as clueless as a maggot trying to play Jazz. He is not an open person, and the Web is all about openness. This guy is a drag on HSX. I predict he will lead to HSX&#8217-s death.

The only 2 persons that could lead to a revival of HSX are Max Keiser or Nigel Eccles. Let&#8217-s hope that Cantor Fitzgerald will call them for help.

UPDATE: See the comments.

OLYMPIC MEDALS: The Los Angeles Times cites HubDub -but not BetFair, TradeSports, NewsFutures, or YooPick.

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Los Angeles Times

Could it be because the journalist had googled &#8220-Olympics&#8221- for his/her research?

HubDub is the only prediction exchange whose prediction market webpages are indexed well by Google.

SEO is key for marketing and P.R., folks &#8212-you see the evidence under your very nose with HubDub and the Olympics.

You, the Midas Oracle readers, are a bunch of lazy bastards…!!!… – Take that, loafers…!!!…

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The provocative title of this post ( :-D ) refers to the fact that Internet citizens don&#8217-t read on the Web.

They scan.

How Little Do Users Read?

I&#8217-ve just read a Slate article that recaps Jakob Nielsen&#8217-s teachings &#8212-I highly recommend it to you.

Previous blog posts by Chris F. Masse:

  • Justin Wolfers [*] is the most cited prediction market economist
  • The Orb @ Texas Tech University
  • VIDEO: The financial markets hacker who will impress Jason Ruspini
  • VIDEO: WeatherBill caught on tape