Designing the algorithm for Foursquare’s venue ratings is one of the best things I’ve worked on in my career. I hear people tell me that if they want to go to a good place, they make a cutoff on our 1-10 scale, say 8.5, and limit their choices to the select few elite places.
To me that sounds a little strict, but the fact remains that the Foursquare venue ratings are a great way to tell the difference between a good spot and a bad spot, and to assess the overall quality of a restaurant or bar before you go. Stephanie Yang and I spent a lot of time ensuring that our ratings are the best in the business, and I’d put these up against any venue rating system out there in terms of quality and accuracy.
Have you ever wondered how we do it? Well, we don’t give away all the secrets, but Stephanie and I wrote a blog post for the Foursquare Engineering blog called Finding the Perfect 10 where we break down some of the methods we use around venue ratings.