Thursday, October 24, 2013

Cuuscomp, an experiment in determining FOL preference

If there is one thing I have learned in bringing Cuusoo projects to your attention it is that FOLs have radically different tastes in LEGO builds.

In the interest of figuring out what projects appeal the most to FOLs, I have set up this piece of code that I'm calling Cuusocomp (it's a working title).

Now it just needs your input.




It is very much in beta right now but you can try it out here: Cuuscomp.  I will be the first to tell you these pages could use a lot of tweeking to look nicer.  This is more of a technical shakedown than a polished product.

Here is the FAQ

 

What is Cuuscomp?

Cuusoo projects are organized based on how much support they have, how many comments they have, how many times they are viewed, and how recent they have been published. 

Many FOLs have complained that these methods still conceal "great" project.  Of course the difficulty in cracking this nut is that FOLs have a vast array of personal preferences.  Anyone who has gone to a meeting of FOLs knows that, though we all respect great builds, we all have our own tastes.  That is why I have created this system. 

Cuuscomp uses random sample comparison to reduce the impact of personal preference for a specific subject and instead emphasis the overall "quality" of a project relative to other Cuusoo projects.

Well, here is how it works.  When a user goes to Cuuscomp, it will present the user with a pair of Cuusoo project.  The user then picks which project they like more and then a new pair is presented.  All of these single votes are pooled together with the votes of every other user to get the overall opinion of the community.

 

Instructions 

Log in via facebook or google by clicking on the icon of the desired option. 

Pick a category (top, popular, newest) and two random projects will be presented.

Click on the "Best of the Two" button of your preferred project of the presented pair
.
You can use whatever metric you want to decide on which project is the best:  Skill of creator, presentation, personal desire for the subject, possibility of production, voting "down" the one you are not voting for...use your own judgement as a "Lego Expert." 

You are free to make snap judgements based on the title image of the project, or you can get more information by clicking on the project image OR title.

If you don't have a preference at all for a pair, go with the your first gut instinct, the idea here is that a lot of tiny decisions are compiled together to make one big one.  

What is effectively happening is a massive round robin.  Each time you pick project X over project Y, the wins and losses are logged and added to a "global FOL opinion" and your own personal preference.   The more answers you give, the more accurate the "personal preference" list will become. 

You can review the global project order and your own personal preference list by clicking on the link: Review Your Results.  From there you can find links to more expansive lists of results as well.  Of course, you should not have any results until you make a few selections.  The more selections you make, the more accurate your personal profile will get.

Category Descriptions

  • Top Projects:  Any project that is brought back in this pair will have at least 500 support.
  • Popular Projects: Any project that is brought back in this pair will have at least 250 support
  • Newest Projects:  These projects range from around the 50th to 70 most recent projects to be added to Cuusoo (and thus their quality varies tremendously).

 

What is this about?

This is a survey system called Random Ballot Polling which reduces the impact of person bias from the results.  
If you let people decide on what they will vote on  they bias their opinions towards what they personally care about and what they know about. This system is to develop a quick way for people to give a rapid opinion between a random pair presented before them.  

This helps to establish the user as a Lego expert giving judgement, not a Lego Fan voting up their favorite subject...for that, people can go directly to Cuusoo and vote up their favorites.  
You may certainly vote your preference on the subjects you love, there is nothing wrong with that, but this system also asks you to vote on projects you likely care less about in the process. 

 

I don't like either project, Can't you give me a NEITHER button?

It is ok to vote up a project you don't like.  All you are saying is based on this pair, A is better than B, not that A is good or B is bad.  The quality of A or B is only established as an aggregation of several comparisons....just like a round robin.  It is not A vs B independent, it is A vs B, A vs C, A vs D, A vs E, B vs C, B vs D, B vs E, C vs D, etc....


I like both projects?  What do I do?

See the question above.

Why do you want my Facebook / Google info?

The fact is I don't really want ANY of your data and that is why I am going this route.  If I created a system where you log in and give me your email address...then I would feel very responsible for that data and that is not the place I want to be at this moment in time.

Additionally I would have to write some code that allows you to create an account and change your password when you inevitably forget it yadda yadda yadda.

So, I am using the expedient of Facebook and Google log on systems.  The only thing I am keeping is your username so it becomes your unique identifier on my system.

If you really want to participate but don't want to give out your username, consider making a "throw away" account on either system to set up your logo on.  

Why do I keep seeing the same three projects over and over again?

You are not logged in.

Where can I find the project's rank

I intend to add a lot of project statistics later but for now you can see it by hovering over the project image on the review pages.

I am not showing the ranking of any project that is below a certain threshold (currently set to 25) because the point of this system is to showcase projects that a lot of FOLs like, not embarrass the low ranking projects.

Why are you doing this?

Well, primarily I like data and crowd-sourcing of information.  But it has a few more purposes.  One is that it gives FOLs an interesting way to peruse the Catalog of Cuusoo projects while supporting projects they like and voting down projects they don't.  Additionally this will help to showcase the projects that the community likes, for one of course is the page that sorts the projects by the ranking.  I will try to develop some better pages for showcasing this data over time but of course, I need the data in order to present it and that is where we are now.