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Netflix explains its recommendation system, can't find a reason for Adam Sandler's last movie

Richard Lawler, @Rjcc
April 8, 2012
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In case you've been wondering why Netflix tends to recommend the movies it does, there's a post on the company's Tech Blog breaking down the various levels of its system. Remember the Netflix Prize contest? Teams of researchers produced competing algorithms capable of more accurately predicting how members would rate movies, but while some of the early winning efforts are still in use, the million dollar solution was never implemented because the potential gains were too small to justify the engineering effort needed. Additionally, while Netflix still hasn't implemented individual profiles for household members yet, the blog indicates it does try to recommend something for everyone, seeking both accuracy and diversity -- which may explain some of more out there picks in our personal "recommended for you" list. Where available (read: outside the US) Facebook integration plays a part too, as well as a variety of information used to find movies similar to those previously viewed. The proof of how all these parts come together is ultimately judged by the viewers, so while we wait for part two of the post with more data to pore over -- is Netflix managing to accurately pull any flicks you want to watch out of its catalog?

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