Archive for September, 2009


Thursday, September 24th, 2009

New mobile network to launch in the UK, built on and by its users. Radical new model? It’s called giffgaff. Youtube video.

New O2 service: ” customers will be encouraged to get directly involved in the business and be rewarded with various perks…. The service is a SIM-only service that gives customers cheaper calls if they refer friends and family, write blogs about it, and regularly post on its online forum. Customers who are actively involved will be given rebates twice a year and they will be given a few options on what to do with it: they will be able to use it for mobile calls and texts, take it as cash or even make a charitable donation.”

Netflix Prize – Round 2

Monday, September 21st, 2009

The netflix prize winners have been announced, as well as the next $1 million competition. From here:

“The new challenge focuses on predicting the movie preferences of people who rarely or never rate the movies they rent. This will be deduced from more than 100 million data points, including information about renters’ ages, genders, ZIP codes, genre ratings and previously chosen movies.

Instead of a single $1 million prize, this new challenge will be split into one $500,000 award to the team judged to be leading after six months and an additional $500,000 to the team in the lead at the 18-month mark, when the contest is wrapped up.”

Interestingly, our previous discussion on the viability of the winner’s results has now an answer. From here:

The team’s 10 percent achievement will not be immediately incorporated into, said Neil Hunt, chief product officer.

“There are several hundred algorithms that contribute to he overall 10 percent improvement – all blended together,” Hunt said. “In order to make the computation feasible to generate the kinds of volumes of predictions that we needed for a real system – we’ve selected just a small number – two or three of those algorithms for direct implementation.”