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Blog Archive for the ‘Long Bets’ Category

Long Bets – 02013 Update

by Austin Brown on February 8th, 02013

Predicting the future is hard. Long Bets is a project by The Long Now Foundation that is testing how hard it really is, and maybe making us just a little bit better at it. The site allows users to post Predictions of at least two years’ duration. Should someone disagree with the likelihood of a…  Read More

Long Predictions Facebook Page

by Austin Brown on February 8th, 02013

We’re going to try something new for a little while – we’ve created a Facebook Page called Long Predictions where we’ll post predictions from the Long Bets site, on the web or in the media. We’re interested in fostering thoughtful, respectful discussion about the future and our culture’s hopes, fears and assumptions about it. We encourage…  Read More

US Presidential election process largely unchanged in 02012 – Long Bet 291

by Austin Brown on February 7th, 02013

In 02007, political tensions were running high and the US was beginning to contemplate who would replace the second President Bush. Amid this polarized climate, Jason Galbraith predicted that, Neither major U. S. political party will hold conventions or indeed primaries to select their 2012 Presidential nominees. Unconvinced by Galbraith’s premonitions of anarchy, coups or…  Read More

First 5-year decline in US vehicle miles traveled since WWII – Long Bet 197

by Austin Brown on February 7th, 02013

In 02005, Daniel K. Simon, believing the effects of Peak Oil to be close at hand, wrote, The U.S Department of Transportation Bureau of Transportation Statistics (www.bts.gov) will report a lower number of total highway vehicle miles traveled in 2010 than in 2005. His Challenger, Glen Raphael, responded, “Five years is too short to expect…  Read More

Russian software industry fails to take global lead – Long Bet 5

by Austin Brown on February 7th, 02013

This was one of the our first Long Bets, made in 02002. Over ten years ago now, Esther Dyson predicted that, “By 2012, the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times will have referred to Russia as “the world leader in software development” or words to that effect.” She was challenged by Bill Campbell,…  Read More

Long Data: Predicting Solar Storms

by Austin Brown on February 1st, 02013

As Samuel Arbesman’s recent article on Long Data might suggest, all the data in the world on the Sun’s activities today can’t tell us what it will do tomorrow. But careful observation over the last several centuries has allowed us to develop a predictive understanding of the patterns in solar storm activity.  This collection of…  Read More

How to Win at Forecasting – an Edge conversation with Philip Tetlock

by Austin Brown on December 10th, 02012

Former SALT speaker Philip Tetlock spoke with Edge recently about his research into forecasting. In 02005, he published Expert Political Judgement: How Good is it? How Can We Know?, for which he spent over a decade recording and assessing the predictions made by public policy experts. He found them to be not much better than…  Read More

Long Bets Bet – How Durable Are URLs?

by Austin Brown on March 23rd, 02012

A major concern of the digital dark age is link rot – the eventual failure of URLs to point to the intended files. As website maintenance falters for any number of reasons the pages can cease to be accessible, even though their addresses may be listed on many other sites. The notion that Long Bets…  Read More

Buffett gains ground in hedge fund bet

by Austin Brown on March 22nd, 02012

In 02008, Warren Buffet placed a Long Bet that will take until 02017 to resolve. He predicted that for those ten years, “the S & P 500 will outperform a portfolio of funds of hedge funds, when performance is measured on a basis net of fees, costs and expenses.” Below is a summary of how…  Read More

Simon vs. Ehrlich, Round 2

by Alex Mensing on October 13th, 02011

Roger Pielke Jr. made an observation on his blog recently regarding the past decade’s rapid increase in commodity prices and the classic debate between optimistic Cornucopians and pessimistic Malthusians. In 01990 ecologist Paul Ehrlich – who has spoken at The Long Now Foundation’s SALT series – lost a decade-long bet to economist Julian Simon. In…  Read More