Microsoft’s Bing prediction engine has a track record of correctly selecting the Super Bowl and World Cup winners. It earned even more applause yesterday as it correctly predicted 20 out of 24 winners for the Academy Awards.
The search engine predicted best picture (Birdman), best director (Birdman’s Alejandro González Iñárritu) best actor (Eddie Redmayne) and best actress (Julianne Moore), as well as the results for supporting actor and actress. Microsoft predicted with an impressive 84 percent accuracy.
Microsoft researcher David Rothschild, at the company’s New York City research lab, is the man who deserves behind-the-scenes credit for managing the prediction model that was used for the Oscars.
Last year, Rothschild correctly predicted 21 out of 24 Oscar winners, and in 2013, he successfully selected 19 of the 24 winners.
The four categories that the algorithm wasn’t able to predict this year were original screenplay, original score, animated feature and film editing.
“Whenever I create predictions I focus on several attributes beyond accuracy, including flexibility, scalability, and timeliness,” Rothschild told Microsoft’s TechNet blog ahead of the Academy Awards.
Vegas odds from the Wynn casino, in comparison, weren’t nearly as on point for the 2015 Academy Awards. The casino successfully predicted four out of the six major Oscar awards, whereas Microsoft predicted all six.