I started working on theNetflix Prize in October 2007 in order to learn more about Machine Learning. I studied Physics, Math, and CS at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
My method involves SVD (mf, nnmf, etc.), kNN, and a variety of neural network based approaches. I combine many results for my 8.31% score; the best individual result with a score achieves a score of 5.14% on the probe set.
I have not participated substantively in the contest since March 2008, at which point I was in fifth place.
Textbook:Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach by Stuart Russell and Peter Norvig