The Barter Matrix – Create your own small network barter deal, live

The attached files contain a template for manually creating a small network barter deal during a presentation, barcamp session or other social gathering. The template is for up to 5 people with up to 4 offers each, but you can extend it. It has not yet been tried in a live environment, so better do that before real-world use wink Instructions for use:

  1. Delete prices and orders. This should be done before the session starts. It will render all cells in dark gray for being "inactive".
  2. Collect participants. Replace dummy user names (user 1, user 2 etc.) with real user names. In both line 1 and column A.
  3. Collect offers and prices. Replace dummy item names (product 1-1, product 1-2 etc.) with names of real products and services people want to offer. Be sure to mention the unit and max. available quantity in the cell for the name, or in a comment on it. Services can be offered by the hour. Prices for each product go into column C and should use the official currency of the location for simplicity. When entering a price, the line will become light gray, showing that the product is available for incoming orders.
  4. Collect orders. Users may order anything offered by the other users. Orders are placed by entering a number of how much to order (1, 2, 1.3 etc.) into the light gray cell belonging to a users column, and to a product's line.
  5. Balance. This is the hardest part, usually done by the Makerfox, but now you have to smiley (on a small order graph only, though). Look at line 25 (user balance). Users with a positive balance have to order more, users with a negative balance have to sell more. Let affected participants make proposals for new orders and / or cancelling orders to get balances closer to zero. Needs some experimenting and time. Some users might even wish to drop off completely to make the deal work.
  6. Execute. Once all users are at balance zero in line 25, everyone sells as much as they get. That's a valid network barter deal, and you can tell everyone to deliver the goods and services they sold according to the barter matrix.

Note: If the field “balance of balances” (I25) is non-zero, there is a bug in the form. It should never happen.

Licence of attached files: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International. Files uploaded by request of @Nadia.

file_fid:14065 - barter matrix template (LibreOffice / OpenOffice – original file, for best results)

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I uploaded an updated version of the Barter Matrix. I added:

  • Colour Coding → Makes explaining and orientation easier
  • A Registration sheet → To separate registration form actual playing
  • Instructions
  • Support for 3, 4 or 5 users

@Nadia We definitely need to test it out before using if we decide too!