Predicting Pandemics

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by Anthony {{qctrl.question.publish_time | dateStr}} Edited on {{qctrl.question.edited_time | dateStr}} Cross-posted on Metaculus {{"estimatedReadingTime" | translate:({minutes: qctrl.question.estimateReadingTime()})}}
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  • As you'll discover if you go to, we've now set up a separate domain to host the proliferating set of COVID-19 questions, which will allow us to go to even finer-grained detail without completely taking over, but also keeping the higher-attention questions on the latter. The currently-envisaged way this will work is:

    • All users are also pandemic users, though you'll have to re-login using your existing credentials.

    • Any question can be posted on just, or just, or both.

      • Most non-pandemic questions should be on just metaculus, but there may be some of interest to the pandemic that can be cross-posted.

      • Pandemic questions that are highly detailed (e.g. a long list of "Infections by date X in locality Y") should go just on pandemic.

      • High-level/high-attention questions should be on both, particularly those about global numbers, longer timescales, etc.

    • The question posted to both is the same question, with the same predictions, discussion, etc. That is, the overall domain acts as a filter as to what questions you see.

    • Pandemic will have a finer-grained set of sub-categories for COVID questions; each domain has its own category/tag system.*

    • Your points and level are distinct for each domain.* For each question that resolves, you'll get points on each domain to which it is cross-posted.

    • Contests and leaderboards are also domain-specific, so the next COVID contest will probably go on pandemic.

    For a while, all COVID questions will just co-exist between the two domains, while we discuss and decide the relation between the domains; at some point we'll start posting some COVID questions just to pandemic.

    Very interested in feedback as to how to make this work best.

    *=might be revisited.

    Health & Pandemics
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