Name that Conundrum

I had a vague notion of the quandry, and now know that it has a name: the Napoleon Dynamite problem, and it’s throwing a monkey wrench into a Netflix competition to improve their recommendation engine, i.e. the algorithm that tells you if you likes movie X, then you should check out movie Y

“Napoleon Dynamite” is very weird and very polarizing. It contains a lot of arch, ironic humor, including a famously kooky dance performed by the titular teenage character to help his hapless friend win a student-council election. It’s the type of quirky entertainment that tends to be either loved or despised. The movie has been rated more than two million times in the Netflix database, and the ratings are disproportionately one or five stars.

Which means that there aren’t really reliable indicators to tell anyone of they’ll like the movie. I wonder if anyone has applied chaos theory to explain the bifurcation. Or maybe it’s just acausal.

(I couldn’t get through more than 15 minutes of N D — it’s not my brand of stupidfunny, or maybe I just wasn’t in the right mood)

via kottke