We’ve all got the vague notion that our little preferences say something about us. For example, you might assume that someone who wears only tight clothing is both a little vain and maybe fast. But take that one step further: Could you use that to surmise their dominant hand or how many hours they sleep at night?
Hunch has used their massive database to correlate millions of personal preferences, and dropped them into this astonishing infographic. For instance, if you don’t support the death penalty, you’re more likely to have never cheated on a test; if you prefer to squash a bug you see on the ground rather than shoosh it away, you’re probably a dog person:
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This can all seem a bit bullshitty, and indeed, we can’t see the R-squared for these results, which would reveal how strong these correlations truly are. But there’s also strong reason to believe something interesting is going on here.
Hunch was founded on the idea that even throwaway decisions reveal deep truths about who we are; if you understand these, then you can make better recommendations about bands or shopping or movies. This is all powered by a huge database: 2,000 questions answered 80 million times.
Check out the second part. iPhone owners are more likely to be generous tippers; Android owners are more likely to visit their local library (apparently these still exist?). Dog people like House; cat people like Big Love. Big readers enjoy watching Law & Order; though who read less like news and sports.
Can you imagine the applications of this sort of intelligence in the future? For example, imagine if you could read someone’s Facebook page, and draw up a hypothetical profile of their entire personality. Granted, this is only statistics, and people will always be unpredictable. Then again, do you really think you’re that unique? Data like these make you wonder.