Zocalo experiment

Friday afternoon I saw a demo by Chris Hibbert of Zocalo, to be an open source platform for running markets. The demo involved playing an apparently classic experimental economics game originally run by Charles Plott.

The game was extremely simple, but more educational for me regarding the methods of experimental economics than having read the occasional popular account over the years. I imagine that such games could be useful in basic education. The dynamics of power seem more intuitive than the dynamics of exchange, yet the former (politics, war and history seen through their lens) gets far more time (possibly this has something to do with the phenomenon of overestimating market failure and underestimating political failure). Perhaps in the near future youth participation in virtual world economies will help fill this educational gap.

Also of note: As of the demo Zocalo is built on mod_pubsub (roughly javascript client in browser keeps http connection open to server, allowing real time updates, no polling and no flash, java or similar required) and has a cool logo. I look forward to the results of further development.

Read the white paper: Zocalo: An Open-Source Platform for Deploying Prediction Markets.

One Response

  1. […] Zocalo experiment. The zocalo (market) leads to nowhere. Self-refuting dead project. On the fantasy that virtual games would soon change youth perception of market and power failures — a carnival mirror reflection of the reality — thin, manufactured, fraudulent markets purely in service of entertainment centered around violence, power, intrigue, and get-rich quick schemes. […]

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