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Subject: The BoardGame Stock Exchange rss

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Eddie Mittelstedt
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The BoardGame Stock Exchange (BSX)
http://bsx.ludoholic.com


Preface
-----------
I love to create web apps. It started with the now defunct Ludoholic, my short-lived contribution to the play-by-web craze. Then a few months ago I came up with a hare-brained scheme called WeeWeeChoo. I loved the concept, but it wasn't very well thought out. In the end, I ended up canning it, but I had a lot of fun coding it.

My latest creation is the BSX. While the idea is not new (see Hollywood Stock Exchange), and it has even been suggested by a user or two here in the past, no one has come up with an implementation. So a couple of weeks ago I thought it would a fun project and started coding. I'm happy to report that I'm ready to go into Alpha testing with it.

I think the BSX will add an interesting meta dynamic to the BGG community, and I'm very interested in seeing how this idea matures.


Premise
-----------
The premise of the BSX is to allow BGG members to trade stocks of their favorite games, designers, artists, and publishers for FREE.

Using the BGG XMLAPI, I am in the process of amassing a stock for each game in the BGG database. Also, there will be a tradable bond for each Designer, Artist, and Publisher.

Each user will start with 2,000,000 dollars (no pinky finger to corner of mouth please) to use as they wish. Stocks and bonds can be opened in both long and short positions. You are free to open and liquidate positions at any time day or night as you please.

Prices for stocks and bonds will only be updated once per night. Every night, I will tap into the BGG database for vital statistics. A price delta will be computed based on these statistics compared to the previous day. Any open positions will then show immediate profit or loss.

A price history chart is displayed for every stock and bond that has at least 2 days of data. It will be an interesting exercise to see how well technical analysis applies to this data.



Getting Started.
----------------
The BSX is only available to BGG members. You need a BGG login to participate.

1. Go to the URL at the top of this page.

2. At the top right of the screen. type in your BGG screen name and click the SEND button. A Geekmail will be sent to you with a session link. Clicking the link logs you in. Once logged in, you will remain logged into the BSX until you manually log out, or your cookie expires, in which case you simply need to click on the GeekMail link sent you again.

Lost your GeekMail? Follow these steps again to have it re-sent to you.

That's it! If this is your first time logging in, your account will be credited with 2,000,000 and you can start browsing the existing stocks and bonds, opening and closing positions, etc.

There is no commission, so opening and immediately closing a position will cost you nothing.



IPOs
-----------
When a stock first gets introduced into the system, it will be an IPO for a day. This simply means this stock will appear on the front page, flagging you to the fact that it is new. Within a day or so, the IPO will be converted to a regular stock.

The price of an IPO is based on it's rank on BGG. The higher the rank, the more the IPO will be. The minimum price for an IPO will be 5.

IPO stocks do not have their price adjusted nightly while they are IPOs.



Bonds
----------
Bonds are special instruments that represent the value of Artists, Designers, and Publishers. A bond will be created for each artist, designer, and publisher of a game as it gets imported into the BSX database..

Bonds start existence at 500 per share. Bond prices get updated as a ratio of the stock price delta.



Temporary Hosting Notice
--------------------------
BSX is currently hosted on my failed WeeWeeChoo.com domain. This site will be going away soon - exactly when I am not sure. But I am taking backups every day of the BSX code and database, and when WeeWeeChoo goes away, there will be an interruption of BSX for a few days while I procure new hosting (and most likely a new domain name).
As of Sep 10, 2009, site has been successfully moved to it's permanent home.



Questions and Random Thoughts Going On From Here
-----------------------------------------------------
One particular idea I want to discuss with this community is the algorithms used to update the price of the stock.

BSX is in Alpha, meaning that at any point I reserve the right to completely blow away the database and start from scratch. Right now the schema is stable, but since I am making this public, who knows what ideas all of you are going to throw at me. So you have been warned! Anyone wishing to avoid this should probably wait until the system goes into Beta.

I am adding 500 new games a day into the database. So we have a way to go before it's complete. I basically started at BGG ID #1 and adding 500 new games a day. Again, I'm keeping this number low to avoid stressing BGG. I can tweak this number if the BGG admins OK it.

As the BSX database grows, I will only be updating a subset of the existing games to ease the burden on BGG. While I wish I could update the entire database every day, this is not practical. Can you imagine the load on BGG if every night I updated 40,000 games? No, that wouldn't work. So I'll need to figure out an efficient algorithm to update a game every few days or so. I welcome dialog with the admins to help me come up with a good per night number of games I would be allowed to update.

I will definitely update all stocks and bonds nightly that have open positions.

I'm sure there will be tons of questions, and I'm very eager to answer them. Also, I very much welcome suggestions for improving or fixing the system. In the meantime, enjoy the system so far!

Please note that there is almost NO price history in the database so far. This will come in time. Be patient. In the meantime we will just have to be more environmental traders instead of technical traders.

My next major feature upgrade will be options on stocks and bonds.

I would also like to look into the possibility WAY DOWN THE ROAD of using GeekGold as a currency.
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Eddie Mittelstedt
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Quick Users Guide

Search Box
Simply type the name of the game you are looking for. No need to press enter (and as of now, pressing enter will cause problems - will fix). A result box will pop up as soon as you stop typing.

I am adding games to the database at a current rate of 500 per day. (I simply don't want to overload the BGG servers at this point). You can check the daily list of IPOs on the front page of the BSX.


Buying / Selling
Navigate to any stock or bond page to purchase shares using using the inteface on the left side of the page.

If you are long shares of the stock and sell short some shares, it will liquidate your quantity of Long shares before purchasing any short shares.

If you are short shares of the stock and buy long some shares, it will decrease your quantity of Short shares before purchasing any Long shares.

For example, you are long 100 shares of Puerto Rico. A week later you then Short sell 200 shares. The system will liquidate your 100 long shares first, then purchase 100 short shares.

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Eddie Mittelstedt
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FAQ

Why doesn't a game show up when I search for it?
Most likely it hasn't been imported from the BGG database yet. The BSX database is not directly tied to the BGG database, therefore games have to be imported over. I'm doing this slowly to avoid overloading the BGG servers. The percentage complete of this import can be viewed at the top of the main BSX page.

What do SHORT and LONG positions mean?
You want to take a long position if you want to profit from the stock or bond increasing in price.
Conversely, you want to take a short position if you want to profit from the stock or bond decreasing in price.
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Eddie Mittelstedt
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Open Issues

Pressing enter on the search box will cause problems
Temporary Solution: Do not press enter in the Search Box. Instead, simply stop typing. A results box will pop up as soon as you stop typing

Fixed
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Eddie Mittelstedt
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Feature Road Map

* Nail down the algorithms for nightly price adjustment

* Call and Put options on stocks and bonds

* DONE! Chat Rooms on the front page and each stock / bond page
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Marshall Miller
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I love your use of the reserved boxes. I had considered that in the past and never had a reason to implement them. That aside, BSX looks neat.
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tim Tim TIm TIM TIMMY!!
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sounds interesting? Man I sure wish I had been around for Ludaholic, you had Kingdoms on there, and that game simply rocks!
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Good luck Ed
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Eddie Mittelstedt
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I am taking requests for additional information to be displayed on the stock and bond page.

Basically, what other information do you need on these pages to make an informed decision to go long or short on a particular stock?
 
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Eddie Mittelstedt
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As Murphy would have it, my hosting has been yanked out from under me.

I have acquired new hosting and am awating set up.
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Herb Petro
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I only bought three shares before the site disappeared. No big deal. You did say this was alpha testing.

The idea is very promising.
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Eddie Mittelstedt
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Ok! We are back in business.

New URL (also updated in the OP) is: http://bsx.ludoholic.com

Some issues with the move:

Everyone is going to have to have a new link sent to them via GeekMail.

About two days worth of data was lost. This is my fault with forgetting to take a backup. Most, if not all of the open trades have been lost. Once logged in again, you will have to re-open your positions.

Historical data has to start from scratch. You won't see historical charts on an item until at least two days of data has been accumulated.
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Rami Finkelshtein
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Interesting,

A great thing for fun I am sure...this way we can all speculate about the top 100/200 or even top 10 and see who is the most correct. I was also interested in the algorithms you have, and as someone who has always been interested in stock analysis, would actually like to get involved and do some work on helping you develop algorithms and make this into a full fledged tool.

Most interestingly I wouldn't mind seeing little competitions on this thing for geekgod..sorta a how much money can you make within a month. A lets see how well you can predict the overall bgg audience.

I'll geekmail you for more

Otherwise keep up the good work
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ŁṲÎS̈
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very interesting.

Is there an API for sending geekmail?
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Bruno
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Number of new reviews, session reports, forum entries, etc in the last week/month .. in general anything that could be interpreted as "news" would be cool to have.

On a separate note, not sure what criteria to use, but it might be worth listing "pink sheets" on a separate exchange (i.e. games with the least amount of owners, etc). Ultimately I think it might be worth listing only the top 10000-20000 games, and not the entire BGG database. So some mechanism (requirements) a stock (boardgame) must meet before it can be listed in BSX.

BTW, do you any algorithm to simulate liquidity / market impact ? Might be worth focusing on getting all this right before moving to other asset classes.

In any case, great idea ! Looking forward to it !

BugLaden wrote:
I am taking requests for additional information to be displayed on the stock and bond page.

Basically, what other information do you need on these pages to make an informed decision to go long or short on a particular stock?
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Paul Doherty
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May have found a bug - Scotland the Brave is showing up multiple times in the right column ("50 Stocks with activity today").

Here's a screenshot of it:

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Bruno
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pdoherty wrote:
May have found a bug - Scotland the Brave is showing up multiple times in the right column ("50 Stocks with activity today").

Here's a screenshot of it:



Same with Puerto Rico, Age of Steam and other games.

Another bug - the search box doesn't seem to work.
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WAN CHIU
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Quote:
Every night, I will tap into the BGG database for vital statistics. A price delta will be computed based on these statistics

Sorry I am new to this. Do you mean I will make a profit if I take the LONG position on a game that rises in ranking/ratings?

Thanks.
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J. Atkinson
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I think you should eliminate games that are the same but have different language titles. It may skew the trading. I saw Carcassonne: Jagers & Verzamelaars as well as German version of Catans.

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Rami Finkelshtein
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teg2 wrote:
[q="pdoherty"]

Same with Puerto Rico, Age of Steam and other games.



Search box worked fined for me (it is clicable only don't press enter when you search) you can just click on the item you want
Also I found Puerto Rico, Age of Steam and i can't speak for other games but note that the
Quote:
4125 games in database (7.64% of BoardGame Geek's database)
at the top....so its understandable if a game isn't there at this point.

I did find a bugs (namely that if a price is >1000 it is divided by 1000 when a price is being show in your account)
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Taylor Liss
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Yea I'm having trouble - I try to search for Tigris and Euphrates but no results come up.

EDIT: Nevermind, just don't hit enter. It will have a drop-down box come up on its own

By the way - if the admins pick up on this, I would love to be able to trade geek gold for stock market cash. That would be neat.

EDIT2: Another error - I bought 10 shares of Tigris and Euphrates and on the game page it says I paid the correct amount but in my account page it says I only paid 12.00 for them instead of 12496.40
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Eddie Mittelstedt
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monteslu wrote:
Is there an API for sending geekmail?
No, I had to reverse engineer the process by looking at the code on the GeekMail page.
Jeff Michaud
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helped me with this, who did it himself with the OLWLG. Props to you JeffyJeff!

teg2, in response to new features request wrote:
Number of new reviews, session reports, forum entries, etc in the last week/month .. in general anything that could be interpreted as "news" would be cool to have.
Excellent! I'll put this on the Feature Road Map.

teg2 wrote:
On a separate note, not sure what criteria to use, but it might be worth listing "pink sheets" on a separate exchange (i.e. games with the least amount of owners, etc). Ultimately I think it might be worth listing only the top 10000-20000 games, and not the entire BGG database. So some mechanism (requirements) a stock (boardgame) must meet before it can be listed in BSX.

I see the point you are making, and this might be a good idea for keeping such stocks out of the limelight (i.e. Random 50 stocks list) but I think ALL games should be available for someone to "invest" in. One never knows when today's trash stock could be tomorrows hot stock...


teg2 wrote:
BTW, do you any algorithm to simulate liquidity / market impact ? Might be worth focusing on getting all this right before moving to other asset classes.
Point taken, and I agree completely.
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has offered to help me with the algorithms, and I'll be taking a hard look at those next.

Currently the algorithms are based off the the available stats on a game. Certain weights are given to different stats, and a price delta is calculated.

pdoherty wrote:
May have found a bug - Scotland the Brave is showing up multiple times in the right column ("50 Stocks with activity today").
Good catch! I used a database query that picked 50 random entries. My guess is that if the sample to choose from is low, there will be a tendency to pick the same stock randomly. I've added a keyword to the query that will hopefully fix this. Someone please let me know if they see this behavior again.

chooche wrote:
Sorry I am new to this. Do you mean I will make a profit if I take the LONG position on a game that rises in ranking/ratings?
Correct.
Long positions mean you want to profit from increases in price.
Short positions mean you want to profit from decreases in price.

jgatkinsn wrote:
I think you should eliminate games that are the same but have different language titles. It may skew the trading. I saw Carcassonne: Jagers & Verzamelaars as well as German version of Catans.
I took a page from BGG with the organization of my data with regards to the relationship between a game and it's many names.

Each game has a primary name (taken from BGG), I also import all the other names a game could possibly have. This way, one could search on a game using the various names, and all link to the same game stock. So there really aren't multiple copies of the same game.

dafink wrote:
I did find a bugs (namely that if a price is >1000 it is divided by 1000 when a price is being show in your account)
Samort7 wrote:
Another error - I bought 10 shares of Tigris and Euphrates and on the game page it says I paid the correct amount but in my account page it says I only paid 12.00 for them instead of 12496.40
Got it. Thanks you two. Will be fixed today!
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Paul Doherty
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Is it necessary that we only purchase as "Short" or "Long"? How about just a Buy and Sell button to purchase/sell at the current price?
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Paul Doherty
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BugLaden wrote:
pdoherty wrote:
May have found a bug - Scotland the Brave is showing up multiple times in the right column ("50 Stocks with activity today").
Good catch! I used a database query that picked 50 random entries. My guess is that if the sample to choose from is low, there will be a tendency to pick the same stock randomly. I've added a keyword to the query that will hopefully fix this. Someone please let me know if they see this behavior again.


In the image you can see though that the section that had the doubled instances of games wasn't the random section (or maybe it had them too) but was the most active stocks section.
 
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Eddie Mittelstedt
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pdoherty wrote:
Is it necessary that we only purchase as "Short" or "Long"? How about just a Buy and Sell button to purchase/sell at the current price?


The current buttons are "Buy Long" and "Sell Short". You could go either way. For example, even if you don't "own" shares of Puerto Rico, you could still Short Sell them, expecting the price to go down.


pdoherty wrote:
In the image you can see though that the section that had the doubled instances of games wasn't the random section (or maybe it had them too) but was the most active stocks section.


Sorry for the confusion. The "Stocks with Activity" are also random selection of stocks with activity. I chose to do this because in the case there were actually over 50 stocks with activity, it would simply choose a random set.


New Topic:
With regards to privacy, each stock and bond lists who owns shares, and how much. No price or profit info is given, but is this still too much?
 
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