How did Jack Peterson discover Truthcoin Whitepaper (the Grandfather to Augur)? Tell us some history. Where did he first encounter Truthcoin's whitepaper and why did he drop everything to start developing it / Augur?
I found the Truthcoin whitepaper on the Bitcointalk forums. I actually wasn't too fired up about it at first; it struck me as a neat concept, but a bit impractical and hand-wavy. Schellingcoin and the Clark et al. paper seemed more practical and less hand-wavy, respectively, but still firmly in the realm of "just nifty concepts".
A few months later, my startup's angel investor, Joe Costello, got ahold of the whitepaper and he absolutely loved it. He was obsessed with it. He energetically pitched to me and my partner (Matt Liston) that Truthcoin was what our startup really should be building. Matt and I both liked the concept but were hesitant to abandon our mostly-finished project (a crypto options exchange), and, long story short, we argued about it until our company ran out of money and imploded.
After the implosion, Joe told me that he still wanted to see Truthcoin built. I said that I did too, and so Joey Krug and I did a basic feasibility study of Truthcoin, i.e. what would actually be required to implement this? (This study ultimately became the Augur whitepaper.) Afterward, we concluded that Truthcoin's problems were real but fixable, and we were confident we could cobble together a working decentralized prediction market out of some combination of ideas from Truthcoin, Schellingcoin, and the Clark paper.
About 4 months later, we published the first working version of Augur on Ethereum's testnet. We've been iterating on it ever since!