Last updated:   Editor: Cubeinator

Lock, Stocks and Smoking Guns? Nontroversy

We had an interesting post on the general forum this week, entitled: “Here is the exploit (1b)”

Bootleggers well known player Perthy posted a picture of the stocks from that day and asked other players to give an explanation for the evidence he saw:

An interesting image indeed. I grabbed popcorn and waited for the comments to roll in, wondering if this would be more fuel for the conspiracy theorists or if there was an explanation for what I could see. Luckily for me, the strange leap to us poor-at-maths players like myself was pointed out:

What Tyn reports is true. To my untrained eye, it means that one stock saw 15 times its profit in one hour, and not just one stock. All of them. This screenshot reports that every stock in a 1 hour span went up every time and was going up huge amounts.

If we look at the recent tab and chart the changes we see that is normally what happens; stock goes up or down around 1.00. To get 1,500.00 in one hour?
For what is reported to have happened - all the stocks up that much in 1 hour - it would mean it went up every time, consistently and constantly, for one hour. To be crude: it is a like having a 50/50 chance for 1500 bets and winning them all.
Somewhat unbelievable.

A guess is that Bootleggers generates a random variable or uses a percentage of the current value, so as not a set a value which can be predicted. I decided to discuss my theories with Mika, who replied:

I cannot comment on both your questions on stocks, I'm afraid. I don't know the answer for one, but it would also go into the inner workings of the feature, which may not be discussed.
Mika said

This reporter thinks Mika’s reply is fair enough. Back on the forum, others tried to explain Perth’s screenshot away as an anomaly:

Could this immense leap be more than luck? I approached Sky to ask his opinion on this. His reply was deadpan:

And rightly so; after all, stocks are bound to leap and fall randomly and according to the moderators they are randomly generated.

And so, for the good of the Buzz and for the purpose of working out a theory, I decided to try out an experiment. I bought 10 shares and monitored them over a 2 hour period, checking every 10 minutes to see how my stocks were doing. It was exciting.

And then…finally…

Not to chart all my emotions, but suffice it to say, my stocks did seem to be rather random. But I did make a profit!

Back to Perthy, who explained away the result to me via BM:

On 2015-01-20 07:45:51 Perthy wrote:
I think it's bugged Click on the graph and everything is normal
perthy said

Sure enough, it was a bug on the stocks page.
In the end many accepted this and were philosophical about the stock market, following in line the opinion of player AdamLennon.

I find I have to agree with this and add that perhaps our critical eyes can only see the negative aspects of the game, the chance we might be misled and that "here be cheaters" rather than the positive things that Bootleggers throws at us sometimes. I once won a dice game, for instance.

However, with profits like these, it certainly makes this player consider taking a bigger stake in the stocks in future.