Alexa now says that only 17 sites are linking to Metaculus. I think these link counts are quite erratic and unreliable; not sure it makes much sense to have a prediction with this resolution criterion.

@(Jgalt) I recommend [re-reading]( last year's declarations from senior members of the International Olympic Committee and the Japanese government to judge the weight one should give to these more recent statements. Back then we were told that "We will overcome the spread of the infection and host the Olympics without problem, as planned" (Japan's President); that Japan is "not considering cancellation of Tokyo olympics at all" (Japan's EconMinister); that...
@(Linch) >I'd also like the ability to add negative probability mass. For example, if I'm trying to predict that something's likely to happen tomorrow, it's hard for me to adjust the sliders such that I'm not accidentally making a prediction in the pass. I'd like a way to reduce probability mass of "will this happen in the past" occurrences (as well as predictions for mortality count that's not below the current level, etc). I think many of these situations could be easily avoided by allowing users to arbitrarily truncate the probability distribution. ...
The gap between Biden and Trump has widened by ~8% in the prediction markets (PredictIt, FTX). In my opinion, this seems like an excessive update given the weight of the evidence, and suggests that the discrepancy between the markets and the models was in part due to a prior irrational expectation by traders that the debates would cause Biden to significantly drop in the polls (an expectation that I've observed in several people in my social circle). One may object that the expectation can be seen as irrational only with the benefit of hindsight. But Me...

@Tamay I hereby promise to fly to Westfield, Indiana to attend this important meeting, regardless of where in the world I happen to be on the previous day.

Here's the relevant series, from the [source]( provided by casens: | 1992 | 1993 | 1994 | 1995 | 1996 | 1997 | 1998 | 1999 | 2000 | 2001 | 2002 | 2003 | 2004 | 2005 | |------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------| | 4.4% | 4.2% | 4.5% | 3.8% | 3.8% | 4.0% | 2.7% | 3.1% | 3.3% | 3.5% | 3.8% | 3.7% | 3.3% | 3.3% | | | | | | | | | ...
I lost 177 points on this question. My reasoning for assigning such a low probability to a positive resolution relied on two flawed assumptions: 1. I thought the clock wouldn't move to 1 minute to midnight, so I assumed it wouldn't move closer to midnight. It didn't occur to me that it could move in increments of less than a minute. This mistake was particularly inexcusable given that there is a precedent for a fractional move: in 2017 the clock moved from 3 to 2.5 minutes to midnight. 2. Like Jgalt, I thought it would be absurd to move the clock closer...
*I'm copying comments on this question made recently by [Scott Alexander]( and [Zvi Mowshowitz](; I do not necessarily endorse their analyses or estimates, but think they are valuable contributions to the discussion.* Alexander: > This is the most-predicted relevant question on Metaculus right now. The first day of the war, the market predicted as high as 90%; as people realized the strength of Ukrainian resistance, it fell to 80. Mi...

Intriguingly, @Rugashan has posted a total of four comments on Metaculus, three of which refer to mysterious "reports" that left users wondering.

@(nagolinc) If 538 was accurately reflecting these considerations, we should expect their model to be well-calibrated. But [Gelman et al]( write that "according to the calibration plot shown by Boice and Wezerek (2019) of Fivethirtyeight’s political forecasts, in this domain 20% for them really means 14%, and 80% really means 88%." Moreover, this isn't just what the data shows, but also what theory would predict. We should expect 538 to be underconfident, as a way of pr...
@(casens) As a side note, I was pleased to see him praise Metaculus: >If it's a boring enough news day that you want to cover me, consider instead covering the many other fascinating and under-covered people and institutions in and around the rationalist community, some of whom are probably women or minorities or whatever. The Qualia Research Institute is doing absolutely picture-perfect mad science. Metaculus is fast becoming what PredictIt should have been; I intend to shill it pretty hard but I can't do it all by myself. Catherine Olsson, Ibasho, and...


This seems incorrect. Here are the top five contenders according to

  1. Biden: 28.6%
  2. Warren: 15.5%
  3. Harris: 13.5%
  4. Buttigieg: 13.2%
  5. Sanders: 11.4%

As you can see, there is no discontinuity between the third and the fourth candidate.

— edited by PabloStafforini

What? I pointed to a betting market aggregator website as evidence against the claim that there are only three major Democratic candidates.

@Uncle Jeff

Via @Jgalt:

• @FiveThirtyEight: 77% Biden

• @TheEconomist: 86% Biden

• @NewStatesman: 80.3% Biden

• @NiskanenCenter: 99.5% Biden

• @Plural_Vote: 71.7% Biden

• @JHKersting: 78.2% Biden


  • Metaculus: 68% Biden

Is this consistent with your hypothesis?

I found [this article]( from *The Economist* pretty informative. Some excerpts: > Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has led to renewed speculation about the future of European energy, and in particular about its supply of natural gas. The continent gets around a quarter of its energy from gas. In 2019 Russia provided over 40% of that gas. ... To what extent could LNG [liquefied natural gas] replace piped Russian gas as a sour...

As a measure of how ridiculous the current median value is (87%), consider that the probability assigned to SpaceX landing people on Mars prior to 2030 is higher than the probability assigned to a Mars landing prior to mid-2069 by SpaceX, NASA, or any other private firm or government agency!

@Uncle Jeff

Would you mind phrasing your comments in a less opinionated way? Imagine how much less pleasant Metaculus would be if everyone expressed their personal opinions on questions involving issues that they care strongly about.

FWIW, I am strongly in favor of this proposition. I just would like Metaculus to remain focused on forecasting.

On the seasonality of COVID-19, I found [this note]( by Marc Lipsitch, a professor of epidemiology at Harvard's School of Public Health, to be informative. I took some notes, reproduced below, in case they are of interest (though they don't add any information not already included in the paper). -- There are four factors that contribute to seasonality in the spread of viruses: 1. _The environment_. Both indoor and outdoor air is typically less humid in winter. Lab studie...

@Anthony I interpreted the question as asking about the party that would control the Senate, and my performance in this tournament will be adversely affected by a negative resolution (to be concrete, I predicted 75%). However, the question text specified the resolution criteria very clearly, and if you look at the comments below, many predictors were interpreting the question based on this text. While I agree that the title was confusing, people (such as myself) could have avoided this confusion by reading the text carefully.