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Yahoo Research Labs Launches Buzz Game

By - March 15, 2005

BuzzgameOver at its Research Labs, Yahoo today announced The Tech Buzz Game, in conjunction with O’Reilly Media. This is a search-driven marketplace creates a futures market of sorts predicting the popularity of various technologies. Very cool. You can even win prizes for best predictions.

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8 thoughts on “Yahoo Research Labs Launches Buzz Game

  1. Otis says:

    Very cool indeed (and addictive!). I’m happy to see my Simpy there ( buy it while it’s hot) ;)

    There is a Desktop Search Engines market, but where is the global Web Search Engines market? That is what I would love to see…. and I’m not sure if I would put my money on Google there.

  2. will says:

    The folks at MIT and (MIT) Technology Review has been running a similar market for about a year now call InnovationFutures. The predictive power of these marketplaces has been validated by other marketplaces such as HSX and Iowa Eletronic Markets, even GM used them to determine product attributes for their next new car (instead of a conjoint analysis). Its a major/hot area of marketing research at all the MBA schools and economics departments.

    As a result, this is not just a “cool” exercise, Yahoo is getting something out of this. . . opportunity for Yahoo to mine the marketplace data to
    1) determine acquisition targets
    2) determine new product lines to invest/launch
    3) determine new features to add

    my question is that will Yahoo be nice enough to share its research with the rest of the world, or take the collective contribution of players and make the information proprietary. I do believe that market is pretty transparent (prices goes up or down!) so it will be hard for Yahoo! to hide too much information. But maybe like prop traders at Goldman, Yahoo can get alot more info simply because they see a lot more data and more timely data.

    BTW, For the academics out there, what are the implications for the different structure of the Yahoo’s market versus InnovationFutures? the securities are not the same (ie contracts vs “stocks”)

  3. Amir Michail says:

    I think these sorts of markets would be a great way to give better search engine rankings. I have built the Speculative Search Game (a Google game) for this purpose: http://www.cse.unsw.edu.au/~amichail/spec/.

  4. Eric Friedman says:

    I would be interested to see if the blogosphere crew will publicly take part in such a “cool hunter” game. Posting daily about tech trends is one thing…putting your virtual money where your mouth is, is another. I would be interested to see the leaders of the pack make their stock picks and let the readers see the results.

  5. Enjoyed the post and the comments. I like mediamammon and spec search game.

    The Tech Buzz Game is part research experiment: We are very interested from an academic point of view how our new auction mechanism behaves and how it compares with others out there, and what kind of predictive power the markets will have.

    And as the 2nd commenter points out, the prices in the market are all public and so are the relative buzz scores, so anyone can use the market to guage community sentiment about various technologies.

  6. Jack Lyons says:

    Intersting that Copernic Desktop Search, the best reviewed and consistently praised desktop search tool bar none, has been ommitted from the game’s Desktop Search market.

    Why leave out the leading product, while including other poorly received products instead? Something smells fishy…

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