Idea Futures

I get the local headlines in the mail and this morning I was greeted by a head line:

So you read this story and feel a feeling of outrage that the US government is A) promoting gambling, and B) promoting gambling on the future deaths of Americans in acts of terrorism.

Get outraged. Rant and rave about the terribleness of the concept. Spew how it is all Bush’s fault.

Then as a media savvy American say to yourself. Two Democrats are outraged. The media is outraged. Mmmm…could there be a political agenda here?

This is a subtle one here. Most people have never heard of Idea Futures, so someone can call it “betting” and get away from it. I, being a reader of science fiction, have heard of Idea Futures via the book EarthWeb by Marc Stiegler.

EarthWeb is one of those books that is a technology based story. Marc does make it into a good story, but it is a tech showcase for a number of future communication methodologies including Idea Futures. (An excellent read, you should check it out. Shows a lot about how the Internet can evolve in the future).

You can learn more about Idea Futures by doing a simple google search for information or follow the links below.

The big problem here is that everyone is going to get out raged and the program will probably be killed before it has a chance to work. I’m going to send references to this post to a few sites I read so maybe we’ll see some non-outrage blogging about it.

I posted a comment to the discussion forums for the story, I don’t know when it will show up as they have a moderator read it first. Here it is if you don’t want to wade through the outrage.

What is really stupid here is the reporting. This isn’t betting any more than the stock market is, which might be open to debate.

This is an example of Idea Futures, which is a way of tapping into the general knowledge of a large number of people.

If the reporter who wrote this propaganda piece or any of you readers who should know better would like more information check out these URLS:

http://hanson.gmu.edu/ideafutures.html

http://www.usifex.com/

http://www.ideosphere.com/fx/

Or do a simple google search for “Idea Futures”

Written while listening to “Don’t Speak”
album Tragic Kingdom
by No Doubt
Written while listening to “Just A Girl”
album Tragic Kingdom
by No Doubt