Thinking our way to the future


Prediction Markets

have had an interesting role to play in many areas of business and in some cases

have produced interesting results

about the markets, not least the predictions.

We experimented with Inklinkg for a while to run a

very small prediction market amongst web publishing people a few months ago, and we correctly

predicted that it was going to snow, but we only got about 5 people using it so it sort of

died off quietly. In spite of this there was a strong feeling that this kind of thing

could be really interesting for science and so a few weeks ago when I came across the

X2 club I was really intrigued. It’s a project from

the Institute of the Future group which is an independent

research group based in Palo Alto.

The X2 club is named after the X club, a dinner club

of influential scientists in London in the 1850’s. The aim of the project is to assemble predictions about the near

and medium future through crowdsourcing. You can add a signal

to the site, which is essentially a link to a piece of news with a short explanation of why this news points to some future trend.

That’s not so novel, but what is is that you can then assemble together signals that come in to the site to create a

Forecast about the future. What is also really innovative is that

editors on the site pull together specific signals and forecasts and present games to the community. A game is an invitation

to write about the future form a perspective imagining that that future had come into existence.

The amount of content on the site is currently quite small, a few hundred members signed up, a few dozens of signals contributed, but the quality of the contributions to date has been very high.


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