Saturday, April 07, 2007

Genetic Design

One of the similarities between television programs and websites is their desire to attract individuals and keep them interested for as long as possible. However, there are a number of variables influencing people's interest. If we normalized for content driven interest, we can determine an optimal visual presentation using genetic algorithms (with visit length as the fitness function).

The main problem would be that people expect a website or television program to be a fairly continuous experience (with some exceptions, like MySpace, where each page is a different "space"). If every link felt like it took you to a new website, there'd be a severe decline in usability. One potential solution to this would be to have multiple populations, and have only minor variations for each user while there may be huge variations between users.

There's also very different considerations for different types of websites and programming (online stores vs. online news vs. game websites, television shopping vs. news programs vs. game shows...).