Tuesday, July 22, 2008

A little humor to start things off...

Here is the text from the web page we initially wanted to put up:

PragmaticTheory : Solving the netflix challenge through divination...

Following the concepts of numerology, team PragmaticTheory was formed on July 7th, 2007 (7/7/7) and started working on the netflix challenge 7 months, 7 weeks and 7 days later. The team consists of 2 human beings with respectively 2 eyes, 2 arms, 2 legs and, most importantly, 2 powerfully energized shakras.

Our strategy is not to use un-proven techniques such as mathematics, matrixes and algorithms. Instead, we are tapping into the universe's hidden powers to uncover user's force fields in order to forecast their ratings with high accuracy. Skeptics will most likely dismiss our techniques as mere superstition, but we think that the progress that we've made so far on the netflix leaderboard speaks for itself.

Here are some more details on the divination methods that our team uses:

- Saggitarius Virgo Decomposition (SVD) : The astralogical signs of the users in the dataset are captured through astral vibration sensors and cross-referenced with star maps and tide charts to predict future movie ratings.

- Asymmetrical Tea-Leaf Models : An array of tea kettles and cups were used to generate 50 million tea-leaf patterns which were individually digitally photographed. A pattern recognition software was implemented to detect assymetries and assign weights accordingly.

- Red-King Black-Queen Machine (RBM) : Tarot spreads were simulated for each user in the dataset and their fate interpreted through an automated karma analyser. Sadly, thousands of users were declared dead at the time of their predicted rating, yielding major sparsness issues...


upsfedex said...

Hey I was wondering if you could make a website that allows us to rate the movies in the Netflix Prize, and get recommendations.
8.85 Improvement! Wow!

Here is an example site, that uses Netflix Prize to recommend, though this example site doesn't allow us to save the ratings on the website:


Maybe you can make a similar site, but that which allows us to make an account to save our ratings, rather than the one above in which the ratings get deleted after we clear the cache.


PragmaticTheory said...

Thanks for you interest. Building a website to actually offer recommendations will have to wait a while. We are still focusing on improving our predictions.

shagbark said...

I don't get it. What method does the "Assymetrical Tea-Leaf Models" stand for?

PragmaticTheory said...

The Asymmetrical Tea-Leaf Model is inspired by a category of models called Asymmetric Factor Models in "The BellKor solution to the Netflix Prize".