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Algorithm determines 'ideal' VP candidates for Obama, McCain
Computerworld ^ | June 30, 2008 | Grant Gross

Posted on 06/30/2008 3:31:23 PM PDT by antiRepublicrat

It turns out that the ideal vice presidential candidate for Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, is the same person as the ideal vice presidential candidate for Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.), the presumptive Democratic nominee, according to a sophisticated online survey by Affinnova Inc.

For both candidates, the best running mate is Colin Powell, a former U.S. Army general and former secretary of state under President George H.W. Bush, according to the survey, which was powered by an Affinnova algorithm it calls "evolutionary optimization."

(Excerpt) Read more at computerworld.com ...


TOPICS: Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: 2008veep; computersarestupid; garbagein; garbageout; mccain; nightmare; obama; powell; vp
Let the fur fly...
1 posted on 06/30/2008 3:31:24 PM PDT by antiRepublicrat
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To: antiRepublicrat

There’s nothing magical about a computer algorithm. It’s what you make it. Garbage in, garbage out.


2 posted on 06/30/2008 3:33:55 PM PDT by ElkGroveDan (The road to hell is paved with the stones of pragmatism.)
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To: antiRepublicrat

The mathematical formula doesn’t take into account certain factors. For example, convention wisdom has been that Obama needs a white man as a running mate, because a ticket of him and a woman or another minority would be too much change for middle America.

And how do you program in the intangibles, i.e. Hillary Clinton could be a strong running mate, but you have to subtract points because of Bill Clinton, for example.


3 posted on 06/30/2008 3:34:51 PM PDT by Dilbert San Diego
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To: Dilbert San Diego

Or that McCain needs a conservative , younger running mate.
Not some 71 year old rino , like Powell , no disrespect
intended.


4 posted on 06/30/2008 3:36:12 PM PDT by RED SOUTH
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To: antiRepublicrat
I went to their site and found damn near NOTHING about who they are. But they did let it out in a press release:
REPEAT AND FREQUENCY DRIVE SALES UP 140% Affinnova Announces Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year 2007 Results WALTHAM, MA – February 12, 2008 – Affinnova Inc. today announced financial results for the quarter and fiscal year ended December 31, 2007. “The effectiveness of our optimization technology is the foundation of our continuing growth,” said Waleed Al-Atraqchi, President and CEO of Affinnova. “Our client base is expanding and importantly our frequency of use is accelerating as clients realize improved innovation outcomes. This momentum along with the additions we have made to our talent base and the new product launches we have planned will help enable a repeat performance in 2008.” Second Half Highlights Affinnova grew sales for the second half ended December 31, 2007 by 123% compared to the second half of 2006, an increase of 33% compared with to the first half of 2007. Sales for fiscal year 2007 grew 140% compared to fiscal year 2006. Growth was largely driven by repeat from new clients and increased frequency of use within existing clients. Such sales represented 68% of total sales in the second half of 2007 compared to 49% in the first half of 2007. In addition, growth came from current multinational clients incorporating Affinnova solutions in countries outside the United States. Such sales represented 20% of total sales in the second half of 2007. About Affinnova Inc. Affinnova is the global leader in optimization technology for marketing innovation. We pioneered the use of evolutionary algorithms in the development and marketing of consumer products, services, and online assets. Our patented IDDEA® optimization technology evolves concepts based on collective consumer choice until only the fittest concepts survive. IDDEA® delivers “Top Concepts” (ideas, designs, or web pages) every time, consistently outperforming any alternative approach. The company’s service and software solutions have been adopted by a growing list of Fortune 500 companies. Headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts, Affinnova is privately-held. For more information about Affinnova, visit www.affinnova.com.
And they do have a list of top clients: P&G, WALMART, Coca-Cola etc. But the real genius here is pimping themselves in the midst of an election. It works, and the existence of this thread is proof! Do I believe their results? Oh hell no. But they did throw out something guaranteed to cause a stir, and in the ad biz, that's GOLD.
5 posted on 06/30/2008 3:38:06 PM PDT by xDGx
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To: xDGx
More: Affinnova Names Waleed Al-Atraqchi as CEO and President Seasoned consumer packaged goods and marketing services executive to lead company WALTHAM, MASS. -- November 14, 2005 -- Affinnova®, Inc., which harnesses the principles of genetic evolution to optimize concepts, products and brands for consumer-focused companies, today announced it has named Waleed Al-Atraqchi as chief executive officer and president. Al-Atraqchi brings to Affinnova 20 years of experience in sales management, brand marketing and product development, as well as an extensive leadership background focused on leveraging innovation to drive business results. David Andonian, who has served as chief executive officer and chairman since June 2003, will remain as chairman of Affinnova’s Board of Directors. "Waleed is a proven leader, one with the optimal combination of sales and marketing management and entrepreneurial expertise needed at this stage of Affinnova’s growth," said David Andonian. "His track record of elevating companies affords him keen insights into the critical success metrics needed to take our organization to the next level. He is a well-chosen addition to Affinnova’s growing roster of consumer packaged goods and marketing services experts." "It’s imperative that companies today continuously innovate to remain competitive in their respective markets -- and the key to innovation is how effectively and how early they listen to consumers in the development process," said Waleed Al-Atraqchi. "With its unique approach to harnessing consumer insight, Affinnova is poised for tremendous growth, and I’m looking forward to taking the helm at this exciting time." Al-Atraqchi joins Affinnova from Imagitas Corporation, a marketing services firm that helps clients communicate with hard-to-reach customer segments, where he most recently served as president. Prior to this position, Al-Atraqchi helped grow Imagitas’ client base of leading consumer and business-to-business brands as executive vice president of sales and marketing. He started with the company in 2001 as executive vice president of sales. Al-Atraqchi began honing his brand management skills at SmithKline Beecham Consumer Health Ltd., where he developed and executed launch strategies for several consumer products. He then developed a series of innovative technology tools (patents pending) allowing marketers to offer targeted reward and incentive programs to consumers while he was SVP of sales at Catalina Marketing Corporation. At Catalina Marketing, Al-Atraqchi worked closely with top packaged goods firms, while rebuilding and expanding an entire sales and client service organization to achieve significant business growth. Al-Atraqchi holds an M.B.A. from Carnegie Mellon Business School, where he graduated with Distinction, and a B.S. from the University of Pittsburgh. About Affinnova, Inc. Affinnova harnesses the voice of consumers to help companies develop more successful brands and products. Its unique, patent-pending technology uses genetic algorithms to "evolve" product designs in response to consumer preferences. Affinnova’s technology has been adopted by a growing list of blue-chip customers including eleven Fortune 500 companies. Affinnova is privately held and headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts. For more information about Affinnova, visit www.affinnova.com. CMU doesn't turn out slouches... (personal bias here ;) but I still think the algorithms can be nudged to turn out just about anything.
6 posted on 06/30/2008 3:41:17 PM PDT by xDGx
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To: antiRepublicrat

How retarded. Nevermind that the Powell was chosen ... the computer came up with the same candidate for BOTH parties?

Need to adjust the algorithm. Perhaps it was biased by a researcher with a crush on Colin Powell.

H


7 posted on 06/30/2008 3:42:04 PM PDT by SnakeDoctor (Jack Bauer for President '08 -- All the world's terrorists hate him. Sounds like a fair fight.)
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To: antiRepublicrat
Don't listen to him. He's just a rookie Dave.

8 posted on 06/30/2008 3:45:04 PM PDT by allmost
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To: ElkGroveDan
I just thought I'd throw it out for fun comment.

But now that I think about it, from a conservative standpoint Powell is a disaster, but I do bet he'd win over a lot of people to McCain. I've always voted conscience over political practicality, but I have to admit in this case I'm scared, uh, feces absent, of Obama appointing Supreme Court justices. I'm especially scared of a reversal of our recent win in Heller. I'm at the verge of saying "Anything that gets McCain elected." This hurts because I don't like McCain (I was for Thompson).

9 posted on 06/30/2008 3:46:22 PM PDT by antiRepublicrat
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To: antiRepublicrat
"It turns out that the ideal vice presidential candidate for Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, is the same person as the ideal vice presidential candidate for Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.), the presumptive Democratic nominee"


10 posted on 06/30/2008 3:46:51 PM PDT by Brian S. Fitzgerald
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To: antiRepublicrat
...former U.S. Army general and former secretary of state under President George H.W. Bush...

Did the algorithm tell this reporter that Colin Powell was the former secretary of state under President George H.W. Bush? Or is that just a cunning anagram for James Baker?

11 posted on 06/30/2008 3:48:19 PM PDT by BusterBear
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To: antiRepublicrat

They probably threw a bunch of names out there and looked for the person with the fewest negatives.

Honestly, I think it was a (well-played) self-promotion by this outfit more than anything else.


12 posted on 06/30/2008 3:48:46 PM PDT by xDGx
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To: antiRepublicrat

Just off the top of my head:

1) Do they “balance” the ticket? Does the ticket *need* to be “balanced”?
2) Will they bring in critical swing States?
3) Will they bring in the base?
4) Will they bring in swing voters?
5) Will they bring in disgruntled opposition voters?
6) Will they make a good fund raiser?
7) Are they known to the public?
8) What are their negatives? Background check?
9) What about their spouse?
10) Have they attacked the candidate in past?
11) Are they of the candidates faction?
12) What lobbies back them? Oppose them?
13) How will the other side attack them?
14) How do they respond to attacks?
15) Do they want the job? Does their spouse back them?
16) Have they written controversial material?


13 posted on 06/30/2008 3:57:01 PM PDT by yefragetuwrabrumuy
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To: antiRepublicrat

In McCain’s position my first choice would likely be J.C. Watts. If nothing else, wishbone quarterback is a harder job than president: you KNOW the guy can deal with pressure.


14 posted on 06/30/2008 4:04:04 PM PDT by wendy1946
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To: antiRepublicrat

No sale.


15 posted on 06/30/2008 4:15:17 PM PDT by Grunthor (Your results may vary)
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To: antiRepublicrat

The perfect VP choice for McCain (IMHO) would be retired General Peter Pace USMC, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, a more courageous, dignified, and honest leader of men you would be hard pressed to find, and he would be a fantastic presidential candidate in 2012 should McCain’s health become an issue preventing him from running for a second term.


16 posted on 06/30/2008 4:22:39 PM PDT by mkjessup (Jimmy Carter is the Skidmark in the panties of American history.)
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To: yefragetuwrabrumuy
That's a lot. I'll try Powell off the top of my head:
  1. Not really, but it counters those who vote solely by race
  2. No idea
  3. No way in hell
  4. Probably
  5. Very likely
  6. Definitely
  7. Definitely
  8. He's already been pretty well vetted
  9. No idea
  10. No
  11. He's pretty much RINO, right there with McCain
  12. No idea
  13. Don't know, "Don't vote McCain because Powell's black, vote for Obama because he's black" Democrats don't have to make sense
  14. Powell was pretty cool-headed
  15. Don't know
  16. Not that I know of
Bush-haters may even forgive him since he went counter to Bush near the end. Bad conservative choice, maybe a good tactical choice.
17 posted on 06/30/2008 4:26:18 PM PDT by antiRepublicrat
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To: RED SOUTH

Colin Powell has intimated he will support Obambi.


18 posted on 06/30/2008 4:30:05 PM PDT by ought-six ( Multiculturalism is national suicide, and political correctness is the cyanide capsule.)
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To: mkjessup

As long as we’re talking generals, what are LTG Honoré’s politics? He was damned impressive during Katrina, and I’d love to hear his “stuck on stupid” directed at Congress as VP. As far as the left’s injecting racism into the election, he’s a total mutt: black, creole, etc.


19 posted on 06/30/2008 4:31:14 PM PDT by antiRepublicrat
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To: wendy1946

“If nothing else, wishbone quarterback is a harder job than president: you KNOW the guy can deal with pressure.”

But can he pass?


20 posted on 06/30/2008 4:33:41 PM PDT by ought-six ( Multiculturalism is national suicide, and political correctness is the cyanide capsule.)
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To: ElkGroveDan

You are correct. The survey algorithm technology they use and the one used in Al Gore’s Climate Computer Model are one and the same. When are MSM, et al, going to realize, or admit, that these are computer codes that are constructed by human things. The mind set of both the programmers and the end users input data play a big impact of the output realized. In other words, as you stated, GICO.


21 posted on 06/30/2008 4:37:26 PM PDT by CHEE (ROCK STEADY!)
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To: antiRepublicrat

Not in this lifetime, as far as all the interviews I’ve seen with Powell’s wife!!! I like him, but he’s too close to RINO status than I like, unfortunately.


22 posted on 06/30/2008 4:38:35 PM PDT by pillut48 (CJ in TX --Soccer Mom and proud Rush Conservative with no dog in the presidential race now *sigh*)
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To: yefragetuwrabrumuy

The algorithm in question.

Black
Military Officer
Served in Washington
In congress or Cabinet
International Experience


23 posted on 06/30/2008 4:43:54 PM PDT by bert (K.E. N.P. +12 . Conservation? Let the NE Yankees freeze.... in the dark)
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To: Hemorrhage
Garbage in, garbage out.

Powell has repeatedly said he is not interested in the presidency. Why would he be interested in the vice presidency?

24 posted on 06/30/2008 4:52:51 PM PDT by Vigilanteman ((Are there any men left in Washington? Or are there only cowards? Ahmad Shah Massoud))
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To: antiRepublicrat

This is not an algorithm. I’m not even sure it qualifies as a heuristic. A WAG, perhaps.


25 posted on 06/30/2008 5:03:05 PM PDT by 6SJ7
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To: RED SOUTH

right!


26 posted on 06/30/2008 5:12:41 PM PDT by ken21 ( people die + you never hear from them again.)
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To: antiRepublicrat

Well, not that it needs said, but anyone that has heard Powell speak knows he speaks very well and says absolutely nothing of substance.

I guess that is good for a VP...


27 posted on 06/30/2008 5:18:06 PM PDT by SlapHappyPappy
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To: antiRepublicrat

You’re right about Honore’, he is one impressive ‘git er done’ kind of General, although he retired just this past January.

I have no idea about his political leanings.

Anybody out there hear or know something?


28 posted on 06/30/2008 6:24:01 PM PDT by mkjessup (Jimmy Carter is the Skidmark in the panties of American history.)
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To: ought-six

Don’t know about Watts, but Jeff Rutledge and Richard Todd could pass well enough. Just one time in my life have I ever seen a situation in which an amateur version of a sport outgrew the pro version and it was more the Bama version of the wishbone than the Okie version. In my estimation, if Bear Bryant had been allowed to coach a college all star team against the super bowl winner in those days, the NFL could easily have been seriously embarassed.


29 posted on 06/30/2008 7:12:26 PM PDT by wendy1946
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To: antiRepublicrat

The programmer that came up with the algorithm should be flogged.


30 posted on 06/30/2008 11:12:44 PM PDT by Mogollon ($5/gal Gas....Kick the Jacka$$es Out!)
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To: antiRepublicrat

With the ever expanding list of black politicians having problems with the Law, Corruption, Bribes, Women, Drugs, etc, etc, — I’m not aware of a single black POLITICIAN above the city council or state legislature level who has earned national attention on the basis of performance.

Are there any out there who should be noted?

Personally, I have known and can think of many blacks more competent to be in a position of national trust that Powell - but none of them are politicians.....


31 posted on 06/30/2008 11:32:11 PM PDT by river rat (Semper Fi - You may turn the other cheek, but I prefer to look into my enemy's vacant dead eyes.)
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To: river rat
Personally, I have known and can think of many blacks more competent to be in a position of national trust that Powell - but none of them are politicians.....

Well, there's your problem. :)

32 posted on 07/01/2008 7:08:36 AM PDT by antiRepublicrat
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To: antiRepublicrat
"Well, there's your problem. :)"

Actually - First, it a major problem for black Americans, but ultimately it's the nation's problem..

There are uncounted righteous, intelligent, honorable and patriotic blacks in America --- but the majority of the black community has turned a deaf ear to them..

Why, you may ask?

Because they won't promise them a larger welfare benefit, a Lexus and an condo in Miami....

33 posted on 07/01/2008 1:43:00 PM PDT by river rat (Semper Fi - You may turn the other cheek, but I prefer to look into my enemy's vacant dead eyes.)
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To: river rat

Sounds like how many blacks turned on Bill Cosby for speaking the truth.


34 posted on 07/01/2008 1:47:22 PM PDT by antiRepublicrat
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To: antiRepublicrat

Yep...


35 posted on 07/01/2008 1:56:42 PM PDT by river rat (Semper Fi - You may turn the other cheek, but I prefer to look into my enemy's vacant dead eyes.)
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To: wendy1946

” In my estimation, if Bear Bryant had been allowed to coach a college all star team against the super bowl winner in those days, the NFL could easily have been seriously embarassed.”

Agreed. The Bear was on a different plane than the mere mortals who were his contempopraries.


36 posted on 07/01/2008 4:51:09 PM PDT by ought-six ( Multiculturalism is national suicide, and political correctness is the cyanide capsule.)
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To: ought-six

The difference between Bryant’s and the Okie visions of the wishbone was that anytime anybody lined up with ten or eleven guys on the line of scrimmage against the Tide like the Fla. teams started doing with the Okies, it was just an automatic seven points; that just put Ozie Newsome and two other gifted receivers out there against man coverage at best, with pinpoint passing. And there was no real defensing the wishbone ground game with anything less than nine or ten guys up close.


37 posted on 07/01/2008 7:07:54 PM PDT by wendy1946
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