10/2/2006

Netflix Offers $1M for Better Picks

Filed under: — By Aviran Mordo @ 10:50 am

Online DVD rental pioneer Netflix Inc. wants recommendations on how to improve its movie recommendation system, and is dangling a $1 million reward as an incentive.

The prize, offered in a contest beginning Monday, is part of Netflix’s effort to sharpen its competitive edge as it continues a bitter duel with Blockbuster Inc. and prepares for an anticipated onslaught of services that make it easier to download movies onto computer hard drives.

By spurring engineers to develop a better way to decipher consumer tastes, Netflix is betting its market-leading DVD service will become more useful to its 5.2 million subscribers and attract new customers.

To win the prize, a software program must improve the accuracy of Netflix’s current movie recommendation system by at least 10 percent. The differences will be tracked by a program that quantifies how well the recommendation systems predict which movies will be liked or disliked by a profiled consumer.

Source: AP

 

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