September 4th, 2006

eyes black and white

Deft or Daft?

I've long noticed that the focus of a gaze, the a propos of a smirk, can distinguish the aware and open-minded from the fools and the fanatical. Just peek at random people in the street, compare to pictures of random researchers on the Internet, or to pictures of random religious fanatics also on the net. There's a lot you can tell -- or maybe you can't, but then odds are a lot of people could tell you can't.

Several friends recently shared their similar experience with me. And so, in the spirit of HotOrNot, I eventually bought DEFTORDAFT.COM. The idea would be to rate people by intelligence according to published pictures. Is there a business plan? Not quite yet. Maybe I could just be diversification for the hotornot site. Or maybe we could link to a geek-oriented dating site such as OkCupid? We could also provide a captcha system in the spirit of HotCaptcha that recognizes people intelligent enough to differentiate the deft from the daft.

I suspect the data processing will be more complex than for HotOrNot, since a sense for sexual attraction is more uniformly shared than a sense for intellectual discrimination. Although even HotOrNot could probably classify people in clusters according to their aesthetic tastes. Because DeftOrDaft will judge the intelligence of the viewer as well as the viewee, we'll probably have to resort to pre-calibrated samples, such as people with known IQs or SATs, or from colleges with known SAT averages; and we'll probably have to use Bayesian analysis techniques such as used by LikeBetter. So, interesting stuff going on behind the scenes...

Ideas are cheap. This one is free. Wanna join with the expensive part: actually building the site?