Into summer do-it-yourself projects? Does building a hedge fund program-trading strategy at home appeal to you?
If so, forget about the beach and family vacations, lock yourself in your den or home office and fire up www.quantopian.com.
Quantopian Inc., Boston, is creating an online community for the algorithm-obsessed. Here and only here can you build, back-test, share if you want to and execute stock trading algorithms, those magical mathematical formulas that drive electronic program trading.
Self-labeled a place for quants, the website offers algorithm writing training, an interactive development environment, granular-level U.S. stock data to 2002, and the ability to back-test your formulas. Absolute secrecy about user-built algorithms is guaranteed, although several hundred formulas have been shared on the website.
Perhaps most important, since you might not have had much human contact while absorbed in writing your algorithms, is the Quantopian forum where quants can share ideas, code and data. Quants can learn from each other and work collaboratively, according to the website.
Quantopian's services are free now, but when access to live trading is available a link will let users hook their algorithms to their brokerage accounts and start trading there will be a fee for that.