Monday, April 30, 2007

Chicago Start-Up Profiles

Even though Paul Graham says if you aren't in Silicon Valley or Cambridge your odds of success are greatly decreased, the Chicago start-up scene seems to be blossoming quite nicely.

A recent article in the Chicago Sun-Times profiles 10 start-ups in the area, a few of which you may have even heard of. :)

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Interview on LinuxWorld

In preparation for launching a LinuxWorld prediction market in the next couple weeks, I was interviewed by Don Marti, its editor for the weekly podcast they do on the site.

One of the questions he asked that I didn't get to elaborate on much was about integration of prediction markets with CRM systems. We've always felt this is how prediction markets for corporations may evolve: instead of or in addition to a standalone marketplace, we expect to be fully integrated instead with an ERP system like SAP or Oracle, CRM systems like, or other mission critical systems of the same ilk. Because if you think about it, the business processes prediction markets have seen success: financial forecasting, project management, product performance, competitive analysis, etc. are many of the same inputs used in these systems. So the question of course to our heavily biased minds is not IF prediction markets will be integrated with these systems, but when and how?

Here's the podcast permalink:

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Date Markets

Typically when someone wants to create a market predicting a date, they create a "numeric value" or "futures" market asking questions like "how many days from now will X launch?" or "How many days from X day will Y take place." These markets can be awkward because it requires the trader to look at a calendar and do some math to figure out what the actual prediction is.

We've heard scattered comments for awhile now from people asking us to address this, especially from a few customers who regularly ask their employees to forecast launch dates, project completion dates, etc. In response, we've recently created a new type of market, aptly named "date market." Essentially these work the same way as our futures markets but instead of seeing a number in the trading assistant, you see a date:

Currently creating a date market is not available to everyone as we are still doing some testing, but you can trade in one. I just started one a couple days ago and will create a couple others soon:

Let us know what you think. If we don't hear anything disastrous, we'll probably make these available for everyone to start using in the next week or two.