1.3 What’s up with the parrot?

Polly the parrot is the mascot of the PollyVote project. In many respects, Polly is an ordinary parrot. She is completely apolitical and knows nothing about politics or voting behavior, and merely parrots what she hears from others. That said, Polly is special in her knowledge about evidence-based forecasting methods and procedures, and she can calculate simple averages. Therefore, Polly is able to apply one of the simplest and yet most effective principles of forecasting, namely combining forecasts. Polly thus illustrates that you don’t have to be a domain expert in order to be able to create accurate forecasts.