Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Netflix and Collaboration
I just read a really interesting article in the New York Times about the power of collaboration. Netflix has been running a contest since 2006 to find a way to significantly improve the movie recommendation system. At the end of the contest (They had 30 days to try to beat the first team that reached 10% improvement.) there was "almost a race to agglomerate as many teams as possible" David Weiss, a PhD student at the University of Pennsylvania is quoted as saying, "The surprise was that the collaborative approach works so well that trying all the algorithms, coding them up and putting them together far exceeded expectations." This is such a different approach than we have been using (knowing what another competitor is trying is cheating) It is so interesting to read this type of thing outside of K-12 Education. What would the world be like if we all collaborated?