Foursquare’s Google Moment: Recommendations Launch Tonight

first_imgTop Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting The race between tech companies aiming to tell you what to do with your free time will heat up tonight with the midnight launch of version 3.0 of location-based social network Foursquare. According to the company, its long awaited recommendations feature will be included.It’s one thing for Amazon or Netflix to recommend movies or other products you might like (that’s a huge business), it’s another thing for an automated system to tell you where you should go when you walk out the door of your house, what real-world venues you should patronize. That’s something a whole lot of companies are going to try to tackle, including Google and Facebook. The Enormity of Real-World RecommendationsInside every “where should I go?” question there are other big questions, like: What should I eat? What should I buy? What should I do with my leisure time plus expendable income? What should I do with my life? Foursquare would love to be a service that regularly answers those questions for millions of people. It’s a very ambitious goal. It’s reminiscent of the question Google has answered, “What Web page should I look at for information about my interest?” As big as the Web is, though – the offline world is bigger, richer and can be more interesting. Win at recommendations offline and your Web application has really done something big.Real-world place recommendations are higher risk (in terms of expense to the user who makes a purchase, the effort required and maybe social cost) but also much higher reward (in terms of lived experience gained and potential commercial activity) than online shopping or media consumption are. Can Foursquare get recommendations right and capture some of this huge potential? What Foursquare Brings to the TableFoursquare first began talking publicly about experiments with recommendation technologies six months ago. Three months ago the company posted a job opening for a data scientist, believed by observers to be someone who would focus on building out the recommendation technology.Nearly two years after launching, the company now says it is fast approaching 7.5 million users and has recorded 500 million user check-ins. Foursquare doesn’t disclose the number of venues it has indexed but one estimate is about 10 million bars, restaurants, parks, stores and other places across the world. If that number is accurate, that would mean there’s been about 50 check-ins per venue on average. That sounds like a healthy little data set to analyze for recommendations.Here’s how the company said today that data will be put to use:The idea is pretty simple: tell us what you’re looking for and we’ll help you find something nearby. The suggestions are based on a little bit of everything – the places you’ve been, the places your friends have visited, your loyalty to your favorite places, the categories and types of places you gravitate towards, what’s popular with other users, the day of the week, places with great tips, the time of day, and so on. We’ll even tell you why we think you should visit a certain place (e.g. popular with friends, similar to your favorite spots). You’ll find it’s helpful for general things like “food”, “coffee”, “nightlife” (we built in quick access to these searches) and you’ll be surprised by what you get when searching for really specific things, like “80s music,” “fireplaces,” “pancakes,” “bratwurst,” and “romantic.” The more random you get, the more interesting the results get (though be patient with this first release… sometimes we can’t find every random thing).Factors Contributing to the New Foursquare Recommendations Your friends’ historyYour loyalty to your favorite placesYour favorite categoriesPopular places across all usersWhat day of the week it isThe time of day a request is madeThe quality of tips a place hasWhat topical experts have to say.And outside of the “Explore” tab, you’ll see some of this thinking starting to surface on the “Me” tab as well. As we started to tinker with our recommendations algorithms, we started to see “expertise” starting to emerge from the data – we’re seeing friends that have been to every karaoke place within 10 miles or tried every burger in Los Angeles. The new “Me” tab surfaces some of this, letting you seek guidance from your friends on the categories and places they explore most.Now, with over half a billion data points, and with every additional check-in and every tip, foursquare gets a little smarter for you, your friends, and the rest of the community. We’re already finding this can be just as helpful for finding a brunch spot in your neighborhood as it can be for helping you navigate a new city for the first time.That sounds great, but the proof will be in the pudding of course. It’s great to hear that this complicated problem is being approached with at least nine different factors taken into consideration. A Design ChallengeWith that many moving parts, there will be engineering challenges for Foursquare for sure – but the resulting experience is what will matter most. Users will be able to know right away if recommendations are for places they have been intrigued by or places they know already and dislike. It’s going to take some finesse to really be compelling.“Machine learning,” wrote Joseph Reisinger in a recent blog post titled Why Generic Machine Learning Fails, “is not undifferentiated heavy lifting, it’s not commoditizable like EC2, and closer to design than coding. The Netflix prize is a good example: the last 10% reduction in RMSE wasn’t due to more powerful generic algorithms, but rather due to some very clever thinking about the structure of the problem; observations like ‘people who rate a whole slew of movies at one time tend to be rating movies they saw a long time ago’ from BellKor.”Will the Foursquare team be able to look at all the diverse kinds of data it has and thread the needle of the mobile, location-based, game-like, social experience in a way that means users look to it for recommendations of places to go in the offline world? Is this the feature that makes the millions of people who’ve looked at Foursquare and asked “what’s the point?” reconsider their perception of an abscence of value? “I actually think most people don’t want Google to answer their questions,” Google’s then-CEO Eric Schmidt said last summer. “They want Google to tell them what they should be doing next.”Google is far from the only company that will aim to solve that problem.Foursquare 3.0 for iPhone and Android should be available for exploring starting late tonight. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… marshall kirkpatrick Tags:#Analysis#Location#NYT#Recommendation Engines#web center_img Related Posts Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

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Rajasthan govt. seeks more wheat under FSA

first_imgRajasthan has sought enhancement of ceiling for beneficiaries under the Food Security Act in accordance with the present population. As the number of beneficiaries in the State has increased by 36 lakh since 2011, the Public Distribution System’s authorities are reportedly facing difficulty in disbursement of foodgrains.Food and Civil Supplies Minister Ramesh Chand Meena has demanded allotment of an additional 26,000 tonnes of wheat from the Centre under the food security scheme. He said the foodgrains were to be supplied to a population of 4.82 crore, but the quantity was received only for 4.46 crore beneficiaries as per the existing ceiling.last_img read more

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Eagles soar to 4th win

first_imgFire hits houses in Mandaluyong City Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Ravena’s impressive form is simply the icing to what has been an inspiring start to the season for the Eagles, who have won all their games by double digit margins.Ateneo assistant coach Sandy Arespacochaga liked the consistency from the Eagles after they responded with a show of force in the final period.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“I think more or less, even though we’ve had ups and downs in this game, we’re happy with the consistency,” said Arespacochaga.Much like their first three games, the Eagles established control early before taking the fight out of the Warriors with another blistering finish anchored by Ravena, whose athleticism and polished offensive arsenal has keyed the early-season surge. E.T. returns to earth, reunites with grown-up Elliott in new ad  MOST READ LATEST STORIES BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fight With Thirdy Ravena continuing his stellar play, Ateneo turned back University of the East, 83-65, on Sunday to stay unbeaten in UAAP Season 80 basketball tournament at Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay.Sustaining his fiery form, Ravena poured 21 points, including 11 in the final period, as the Blue Eagles notched their fourth win in as many games to solidify their hold of top spot, a day after fierce rival La Salle suffered its first loss of the season.ADVERTISEMENT Frontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients  Read Next Nonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. ATENEO 83—Ravena 21, Nieto Ma. 11, Black 10, Nieto Mi. 10, Tolentino 9, Asistio 8, Verano 4, Porter 3, Ikeh 2, Go 2, Mendoza 2, Tio 1, White 0, Mallillin 0, Mamuyac 0, Andrade 0.UE 65—Pasaol 22, Abanto 10, Maloles 9, Derige 6, Acuno 5, Bartolome 4, Olayon 4, Conner 3, Varilla 2, Manalang 0, Cullar 0, Armenion 0, Gagate 0.Quarters: 18-11, 32-23, 60-52, 83-65 Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC LOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary “I need to stay more consistent than last season,” said Ravena, who spiked his scoring average to 18.7 points per game.“Last season, I’ll have a good game then the next game, polar opposite. I’m just mentally focused coming into the season.”The Warriors stayed in the thick of the fight after exploding for 29 points in the third period that allowed them to close in at 52-60.Later, Papi Sarr threw his weight around inside the paint, while Jerie Pingoy sparkled on both ends of the floor as Adamson rolled past National U, 83-76, to even its card at 2-2, tying FEU and NU for fourth spot.Matt Nieto, Aaron Black and Mike Nieto also dished out double-digit outputs, combining for 31 points for the Eagles, who face University of Santo Tomas on Wednesday.ADVERTISEMENT Ph 5 cruises past Thais View comments Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:11’Not just basketball’: Circumcisions, pageants at Philippine courts00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Gameslast_img read more

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Xolo will pay back entire money if you use its Era 4X for 30 days and don’t like it

first_imgThe entry-level budget smartphone segment under Rs 10,000 is presently booming with competitive options. Xolo, the online Indian smartphone brand, has come up with a brand new smartphone in this price category. Called the Xolo Era 4X, the smartphone comes in two variants, with the base variant starting at Rs 4,444. The smartphone will be exclusively available on Amazon.in from January 9. The Xolo Era 4X will compete head-to-head with the likes of Xiaomi’s Redmi 6A and Nokia 1.Xolo Era 4X specificationsThe Xolo Era 4X comes in two variants. The base variant, which costs Rs 4,444, comes with Android Go Oreo. The smartphone features 1GB RAM and 16GB storage. Android Go makes for smoother and fluid Android experience even on low-end devices. Additionally, a stock Android approach also means that users can expect faster Android updates over the course of time. Android Go devices come with their own suite of Android Go apps. These apps take lesser space and don’t need high-end specifications.Xolo says that the Era 4X is built around a 1.5GHz quad-core processor. It sports a 5.45-inch HD+ display with an aspect ratio of 18:9 and a 2.5D Gorilla Glass. In terms of the optics, the Era 4X comes with an 8-megapixel rear camera and a 5-megapixel front camera. A 3000mAh battery is claimed to power the smartphone for up to a day and a half.The high-end variant with 2GB RAM costs Rs 5,555 and comes with the full-blown Android 8.1 Oreo.Xolo’s buyback programIn order to mark the entry with a solid impact, Xolo is offering a buyback offer on the Era 4X. If the customer is not satisfied with the performance of the Xolo Era 4X, Xolo will take back the phone and return the entire amount. The return will only take place within 30 days of the purchase of the device. Therefore, if you buy the phone and aren’t impressed with its performance, you can get a full refund from the company within 30 days from the date of purchase.advertisementXolo Era 4X launch offersXolo has also partnered with Jio. Users will get Rs 1,200 instant cashback and 50GB additional 4G Data. The moment a customer performs a recharge of Rs 198 or Rs 299, 24 vouchers of Rs 50 each will be credited to the customers MyJio account. These Cashback vouchers can be redeemed, one at a time, against subsequent, recharges of Rs 198 and Rs 299 via MyJio app only. In addition, upon performing recharge of Rs 198 and Rs 299, 5GB additional data voucher will be credited in user’s MyJio account.last_img read more

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14 days agoEx-Liverpool goalkeeper James: Pickford still England’s best

first_imgEx-Liverpool goalkeeper James: Pickford still England’s bestby Paul Vegas14 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveFormer Liverpool goalkeeper David James says Jordan Pickford is the “best” English goalkeeper ahead of their upcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers.Everton keeper Pickford is set to add to his 21 caps for the national side this week as England take on Czech Republic and Bulgaria on away soil.”I’m a fan of Jordan,” James said. “Looking at the Premier League clubs now I think there’s quite a few young English goalkeepers coming through but I still think he is the best about at the moment.”I like him, he’s confident. It will be interesting to see how his development goes.”Having had such a meteoric rise to the England position and shoring up that no.1 spot, there’s going to be a lull at some point. But he’s decent and he’s a good lad. When I’ve spoken to him he’s very focused, which is obviously very important.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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UNC Honored Coach K’s 1,000 Wins Before Tonight’s Rivalry Game

first_imgCoach K honored before game against UNC.UNC and Duke just tipped off in the latest installment of their classic rivalry. The first game between the two teams back on Feb 18 was an overtime thriller, before which the two schools joined together to honor legendary former UNC coach Dean Smith, who had just passed away.Tonight, UNC returned the favor, presenting Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski with a plaque to commemorate him reaching the 1,000-win plateau. The public address announcer at the Dean Dome also thanked Krzyzewski for the respect he showed Smith after his passing.Great moment by @GoHeels players and Coach Roy Williams to honor Mike Krzyzewski’s 1,000 wins. #UNCvsDUKE pic.twitter.com/v67UFaeJvu— Durham Magazine (@durhammag) March 8, 2015Cool gesture on UNC’s part, and a great show of admiration and respect within the confines of a heated rivalry.last_img read more

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Trying to Measure the LeBron Effect on Game Attendance

LeBron James may not show up for the Miami Heat next year, but whichever team he ends up with is likely to see a huge economic bump. James puts people in the seats.After reports leaked Tuesday that James would exercise his early-termination option in his contract with the Heat, some speculated that he’ll actually stay in South Beach next season. But teams are itching to clear cap space in the hopes of signing the NBA forward.We know plenty about James’s value on the court, but to get some sense of his economic value, we looked at how attendance changed before and while he was on the Cavaliers and Heat. As a baseline, the average NBA team’s attendance is about 90 percent capacity over the course of the season, but that varies wildly depending on a team’s winning percentage. (It also presumably fluctuates throughout a season.) I looked at NBA teams’ winning percentage and home-game attendance from the 2001-02 season through the 2013-14 season, and found that a team that wins 80 percent of its games — roughly 66 games in a season, probably the best record in the league — should average 100 percent capacity. Comparatively, a team that wins only 20 percent of its games will, on average, sell 80 percent of its tickets.It’s easy to see why winning fills arenas. Wins excite fans, give them hope for a potential championship, and (hopefully) are a display of entertaining basketball. James helps do that better than nearly anybody. Even controlling for success, a “LeBron Effect” materialized in the data. The teams he’s played for — the 2004 through 2010 Cavs and the 2011 though 2014 Heat — have home-attendance averages of 98.0 percent capacity, well above what their records would predict. Nearly all of James’s teams have sold tickets at higher rates than we’d expect for how well they performed. Note how for every season but one, his teams are above the line in the chart below.(Attendance here is measured by capacity, or the percentage of available seats sold. Sometimes capacity percentages rise above 100 percent because of imperfect stadium data, whether standing-room-only tickets are counted, etc.)Interestingly, James sells out even more so on the road, perhaps because he’s more of a novelty when traveling. Over the past six seasons — his last two with the Cavs and all four with the Heat — James’s teams away capacity has averaged 99.5 percent. (Because of imperfect data on away game attendance capacity, only the past six seasons were analyzed.) It’s no surprise that the relationship between a team’s winning percentage and its draw while traveling is much weaker — that is, the curve is flatter. But adjusting for how good the Cavs or Heat were in a given season, those teams with James on them sold out the house. Look how far above the line James teams are now:This analysis does not account for ticket prices, merchandise sales or any of the other revenue channels for James’s teams, so it’s just the beginning of the conversation about his economic worth. But wherever he ends up, two things are likely to continue: His team will sell out the home stadium, and his opponents’ box offices will be sad to see him go. read more

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Students impress in qualifiers for race against Ohio States Dontre Wilson Devin

Runners relax post-race while Fernando Lovo, football operations coordinator, speaks of the next step in the process, the semifinals to be held April 5. Fastest Student Race took place March 26 at the Woody Hayes Center as part of the preliminary rounds to race against OSU football players at the Spring Game. Credit: Kathleen Martini / Oller reporterThey’ve long been called some of the best fans in the land, but Ohio State students might also have earned the title of some of the fastest in the land.With many current and formers Buckeyes looking on, 41 Ohio State students showed up to the Woody Hayes Athletic Center Wednesday, looking to compete for a chance to race against sophomore running back Dontre Wilson and senior wide receiver Devin Smith at halftime of OSU’s Spring Game April 12.Once the competitors toed the line and went back in their stances, the onlookers were more than impressed.“Believe it or not, some of the times that we have here are even faster than we had when we did this at (the University of) Florida. It’s pretty impressive,” Fernando Lovo, OSU’s football operations coordinator, said following the event. “These kids were unbelievable. It was really impressive.”While Lovo would not reveal the names of the competitors who advanced to the next round — which is set to take place at OSU’s Student Appreciation Day April 5  — he did reveal some of the 40-yard dash times that impressed him.“We had a 4.4 (seconds) — that was our fastest time,” Lovo said. “We also had a 4.51, 4.53, 4.52 and a 4.6, so there were some great times.”After hearing whispers in the locker room, Wilson made his way to the field size up his future competition. While he was also impressed with what he saw on the turf, the sophomore couldn’t find anyone who would beat him.“It’s possible,” Wilson said, who has been clocked at 4.33 seconds in a 40-yard dash since joining the Buckeyes. “But I’m not going to let that happen.”Despite being noticed as one of the faster runners in the competition, Colwyn Headley, a fourth-year in microbiology, agreed with Wilson in his prediction.“Dontre is probably like a world-class sprinter,” Headley said, with a big smile on his face. “I’m just a poser if anything.”John Findley, a second-year in sports management, however, thought he had a real shot at the speedy sophomore.“I’m going to give 110 percent,” Findley said. “Dontre is a really nice guy, but I really want to try to beat him.”Marcus Perry, a second-year in aerospace engineering, echoed Findley’s confidence, saying he too had a legitimate chance beating Wilson in Ohio Stadium.“I was a sprinter in high school, so I have a decent chance,” Perry said. “I just hope I get a decent start. I’m a little bit out of shape, but I’m hoping for the best.”While he was focused on the task at hand, Findley wanted to take the time to appreciate the opportunity coach Urban Meyer had afforded them.“Coach Meyer is an awesome coach,” Findley said. “Every day you don’t get to meet the fastest running back or wide receiver on the Buckeyes or even get to watch a practice on this field. It’s pretty awesome.”The students who are set to run in the next round of races April 5 at OSU’s Student Appreciation Day will be notified privately in the coming days, Lovo said. He did not say whether or not their names would be made public before the next set of races. read more

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Mens Volleyball No 11 Ohio State returns to winning ways with straightset

Redshirt sophomore Jake Hanes (16) anticipates making contact with the ball at the game against George Mason on Jan. 18 at St. John Arena in Columbus. Credit: Ethan Clewell | Senior Reporter.A frustrating stretch of three straight losses hung over the No. 11 Ohio State men’s volleyball team (3-3) prior to Saturday’s match against Erskine, the longest winless stretch it has experienced since the 2013-14 season.Yet, the Buckeyes quickly found themselves back to their winning ways as they broke their three-game losing streak with a dominant, straight-set victory over Erskine (1-5), 25-12, 25-22 and 25-17.Ohio State men’s volleyball head coach Pete Hanson called a team meeting Saturday morning to discuss what happened in the home loss to George Mason on Friday.“I kind of asked the guys, hey, what did they think about as they reflected back on the match,” Hanson said.He noticed that a lot of the same things were mentioned.“They didn’t play with a lot of energy,” Hanson said. “They weren’t really committed to what we needed to do to beat a good team, and consequently a good team beat us.” The Buckeyes proved their commitment early on Saturday when they tallied 16 of the final 21 points in the first set, cruising to 25-12 victory.Despite 19 service errors in the match, Ohio State used six aces and 9.5 blocks to finish Erskine in straight sets.Two of those aces came from sophomore opposite hitter Jake Hanes, also adding 12 kills, eight digs and contributing on five blocks for the Buckeyes.But Hanes was outpaced in the kill category for the first time this season, as sophomore outside hitter Martin Lallemand tallied 13 kills, adding two aces and contributing on two blocks.Looking to build on the one-sided first set, Ohio State jumped out to an early second set lead, but eight service errors kept the Buckeyes from pulling away. But a kill by redshirt senior middle blocker Blake Leeson began a 3-0 scoring run, pushing the Buckeye lead to 21-17.Leeson also helped jumpstart a 7-1 run by the Buckeyes to start the third set with a two kills and an ace, leading to 25-17 victory.Though Leeson was productive, hitting 11 kills on 13 attacks for an .846 hitting percentage, he recognized the team still has room for improvement.“There are a lot of things we have to do mentally to fix some issues that we have,” Leeson said. “I think that with each game, with the young group that we do have playing on the court right now, I think that [experience] will help that.”Ohio State also had a significant contribution from the bench.Freshman middle blocker Ethan Talley made the most of his time on the court, adding three kills and contributing on a team-high seven blocks.Ohio State will return to action against conference foe Ball State at 7 p.m. on Saturday in Muncie, Indiana. read more

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Luka Modric could already be Ballon dOr winner says Dejan Lovren

first_imgCroatia star Dejan Lovren said that if Luka Modric was Spanish or German he may have already have won a Ballon d’Or award.The 32-year-old Modric scored a superb goal in Croatia’s World Cup win over Argentina and netted a penalty against Nigeria. The midfielder has been a regular at Real Madrid since 2012 but no Croatian has ever won the Ballon d’Or.“Because we are a smaller country, he does get less attention than he deserves,” said Liverpool’s Lovren via BBC.“Modric would probably be getting more attention than he is right now if he was a German or Spanish player. He would maybe even be a Ballon d’Or winner.”Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have shared the Ballon d’Or for the last 10 years, winning five apiece but Davor Suker was second in the 1998 voting after the former Real Madrid striker won the Golden Boot as Croatia finished third at the World Cup.Luka Modric, Real MadridReal Madrid suffer a Luka Modric injury blow Andrew Smyth – September 12, 2019 Real Madrid have announced that Luka Modric has suffered an adductor injury, which could rule him out of some key fixtures.Modric joined the Spanish giants from Tottenham and has gone on to win the Champions League four times, La Liga once and the Copa del Rey once.“It is a real pleasure to play with Luka Modric,” Lovren added.“We are all football lovers and we know Modric is an incredible player. He is one of the best in the world right now.”Modric had six assists in La Liga last season, with a pass completion rate of 89.9%.last_img read more

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