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You Augur What You Read

by Jeremy Gardner

 If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.

-Isaac Newton, letter to Robert Hooke (1676)

Augur is the product of many scholars and entrepreneurs’ tireless work. From Robin Hanson’s development of the modern prediction market to Paul Sztorc’s “Truthcoin”, not to forget InTrade, Augur would be nothing if not for the intellectual and enterprising advancements made before it.

Thus, we have decided to share with you some of our favorite readings and blogs that comprise of the primary foundations and influences of our work. - Paul Sztorc (Augur Advisory Board member)

Truthcoin is the foundation of Augur, much like the Nakamato whitepaper is the foundation of Bitcoin (if the Satoshi paper had been written without accompanying software.) We have drawn on the wealth of information and guidance provided by Paul’s work and used it as the intellectual skeleton for creating working, decentralized prediction markets. For an in-depth understanding of how Augur functions, particularly in the game theoretical sense, visit Sztorc’s website and indulge. Paul is a member of the Augur advisory board.

Overcoming Bias - Robin Hanson (Augur Advisory Board member)

Hanson, a professor of economics at George Mason Unviersity, is the undisputed father of modern prediction markets, and a noted futurist. He invented the market scoring rules like Logarithmic Market Scoring Rule (LMSR), which are used in most modern prediction markets (an updated version, LS-LMSR, is what Augur uses for its markets.) His blog is like a gateway into his fascinating mind, covering a wealth of topics, from social policy to “dark matter assets.”  Dr. Hanson is also part of Augur’s advisors.  

Oddhead Blog - David Pennock

“David Pennock is a Principal Research Scientist at Yahoo! Research in New York City, where he leads a group focused on algorithmic economics” (too hard to paraphrase.)  Pennock’s blog ventures deeply into the world of prediction markets and all sorts of other odds making. It is fascinating reading and definitely worth delving into.

FiveThirtyEight - Nate Silver (and others)

Arguably the most famous living statistician besides, perhaps, David Cox, and certainly the most popular, Nate Silver has helped shape contemporary sports and political forecasting unlike few others. The New Yorker calls Silver “America’s secular god of predictions.” Bayes’ Theorem is one of his favorite models of statistical analysis and one we value highly at Augur. But even the so-called “god of predictions” is a fan of PMs. He’s definitely worth a read.

We’ll do a piece on our favorite academic literature and books in the near future. But this should serve as inspiring weekend reading. Until next time...

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