Crowd-sourcing online talent to win a million-dollar competition | #CDSUSA

Editor’s Note: Recently, at the Chief Data Scientist, USA, we had the pleasure of being joined by @SiliconANGLE Media, Inc. (theCUBE) to interview some of our attendees about the world of Data Science. Watch the video below. This article written by Nelson Williams was originally posted on SiliconANGLE blog.  


Talent shows have become a television favorite across the world. On the production side, they’re cheap and relatively easy to throw together. Viewers love seeing new acts and voting for their favorites. Still, only so many people can audition for these shows, and even fewer can make the trip to wherever filming takes place. The online world of user-generated media has a solution.

To learn more about an online talent show in the works, Jeff Frick (@JeffFrick), co-host of theCUBE*, from the SiliconANGLE Media team, visited the Chief Data Scientist, USA event in San Francisco, CA. There, he spoke with Roman Sharkey, chief data scientist at Megastar Millionaire.

The data science of talent

The conversation opened up with a look at Megastar Millionaire itself. Sharkey described the show as the world’s first online talent platform. Currently in beta testing, he expected Megastar Millionaire to go global sometime next year. He mentioned how the winner would be determined by votes and video shares, with a celebrity judging panel reigning over the finals.

Sharkey stated that as a data scientist, his role with the company was twofold. First, he was responsible for analytics, collecting data to extract information from users. Second, there was the machine learning part. A major project within the company involved obtaining new performers by detecting real talent in videos online outside the show and then inviting those people to join.

“The system is already really accurate, and its accuracy is improving,” Sharkey said.

Testing and business

At the moment, Megastar Millionaire is still testing its technology. Sharkey explained it’s keeping the number of performers low while testing out the platform, with about 200 to 250 people in the beta competition. On the business side, the company is working with funding from investors and is listed on the Australian stock exchange.

Sharkey pointed out the company is working on things no one has done in practice so far. His goal was to find new ways to accomplish tasks through data science. As for Megastar Millionaire itself, users can find its app in the Apple App Store and Google Play.

Watch the complete video interview below:

 

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