Calling All Mathematicians, Statisticians and Engineers: Your Best Algorithm Could be Worth $1 Million!

Guest Post from Dr. Patrick Byrne, CEO of

I am an outspoken proponent of excellence in education. There’s almost nothing more important to our society’s long-term success than providing individuals the opportunity to excel in the life-long pursuit of knowledge.

At we seize the opportunity to give back to the academic community in ways that not only enhance a person’s drive towards higher learning, but also integrate opportunities to leverage business models that support our goal to be the most important shopping destination for our consumers.

To that end, we’re proud to announce the RecLab Prize on—which will be a fantastic accelerator of personalization for our website’s shopping experience. But even more important, it will be a great chance to give back to the academic community across the world. Someone is going to win a lot of money, but so many more will win from being able to put their technical chops to the test on real, actionable data.

The initial announcement has seen tremendous response from academia across the globe. Within the first day of launch, we had engineers registering from academic institutions like these listed below:

• Carnegie Mellon University
• Stanford
• Berkeley
• Texas A&M
• University of Colorado at Boulder
• Vanderbilt University
• University College London
• Indian Institute of Technology – Madras
• IIIT Hyderabad
• University of Chile
• Chinese Academy of Sciences
• University of the Aegean

I’m a believer in the wisdom of crowds. A lot of good ideas are out at the periphery. We are asking you for your best and brightest. We’re calling out for all your mathematicians, statisticians, and engineers. There’s up to a million dollars waiting here for the winners, and up to $250,000 dollars will go to the educational institution affiliated with these winners.

Our partnership with RichRelevance has been a huge asset to our business, and we see this as a way to take that relationship to a higher level while helping our schools and customers in the process.

I look forward to meeting many of you as this competition progresses.

Your Humble Servant,

Dr. Patrick Byrne

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