Forget dating sites and apps like Tinder! A new “dating site” is up and running without the hassle of creating a profile and taking a selfie for your profile picture. All you need is a Facebook account and an interest to find your special someone!
Who: Keisuke Inoue and Chris McCarthy
What: “WhoIsInto.Me is a tool driven by your Facebook data that tells you whether or not your friends are romantically interested in you.”
Where: Syracuse University, School of Information Studies (iSchool)
The Problem: “Companies leverage data in order to effectively market their products, sports teams use it to decide when to start different players, but there aren’t many data applications that focus on an individual’s personal life and relationships. We want to help people understand the practical application of their data, and help them extract benefits from it.”
Who’s Behind WhoIsInto.Me?
Keisuke and Chris started working on the service in the iSchool last year in 2014 when Keisuke taught Chris in a web application development course. At the beginning of the year, the pair started putting serious time into it, and officially launched the beta-version website in the beginning of February.
The pair met on a swim team for adults and decided to work together on the project that was called IsSheInto.Me at the time. They are also experienced in the startup world as they are both working full-time with other startups as well. Keisuke is a Senior Data Scientist with Splyst (recently renamed Emogi) and Chris is the Chief Technology Offier at ChronicleMe.
Chris shares how they work together despite their busy schedules:
“Since we both have full time jobs, we typically work nights and weekends, although we are in touch almost every day about one thing or another. We have a running list of things we’d like to implement, and we work on them as need and our schedule permits. Flexibility is critical when working on an early stage startup like WhoIsInto.Me, if you aren’t willing to respond to users demand your product will quickly become irrelevant”
The team behind WhoIsInto.Me prove to be hard workers and innovators in the data analysis field.
The app looks at the following data to
generate a list of who is interested in you:
(1) how frequently someone posts on Facebook,
(2) the number of likes someone receives, and
(3) the content of the comments on those particular posts. Currently, the algorithm is a combination of simple statistics of Facebook and sentiment analysis. Moving forward, the team is preparing for applying machine learning to achieve higher accuracy.
What’s Next for WhoIsInto.Me?
The team recently improved their algorithm for the analysis to include the messages that the user has exchanged with their friends. Since the service is heavily based on the accuracy of the results, the algorithm is constantly improved to achieve a better accuracy and meaningful result for the user. The team is also working on a new algorithm that focuses on and analyzes the user activities on Facebook and provide tips for the user to make the most out of an opportunity.
This interesting observation and analysis of valuable data shows just how the duo think. They take data that is otherwise useless for the users and transform it into opportunities for people to further communicate with one another.
Chris also shared his professional insight and experience working with startups:
“We consider this project as a test of what we have been learning through our career, as well as an opportunity to learn new things that we cannot learn at work. We obviously believe in the potential success of the project, too, but the most important thing for us is learning, and having fun while doing it!”
Considering the team’s experience in startups, Keisuke and Inoue appear fearless and willing to accept the risks of launching a startup with WhoIsInto.Me.
Curious about how WhoIsInto.Me can help find your next date? If WhoIsInto.Me interests you, check them out on Twitter!