Wither The McFlurry

People, we have an issue. I mean, even the Wall Street Journal is talking about it ($$).

It appears that there is a growing situation at McDonalds and it has to do with the McFlurry – that wonderful dessert combo of soft serve ice cream and Oreos or M&Ms or Rolos (yum!) mixed into an ice creamy combination that checks all the boxes. It appears that in McDonald’s nation, there is a rampant issue with the McFlurry mixing machine. It is not being used by McDonalds employees as they prep McFlurries. Now, soft serve ice cream with one of those aforementioned toppings is nothing to ignore, but when the expectation is that they will all be mixed together into the concoction that is the McFlurry, and that is not being done on a national basis, that is cause for grave concern.

According to UnderUnderstood, the McFlurry Index is currently at 41%, meaning that for every 10 McFlurries that are ordered, only 4 of them are actually getting mixed. Yes, there is a mechanism to track this – as there is a mechanism to track everything these days.

The core issue here is that the mixing machine for the McFlurry uses the uniquely designed spoon to actually mix the dessert. So when the mixing machine is ‘broken’ or actually, legitimately broken, the mechanism to mix everything is useless. So the McDonalds employees punt and just throw the ‘add in’ on top of the ice cream instead of mixing it together. Heresy!

So what can be done to rectify this national emergency? First, you can record the “McFlurriness” of your McFlurry here (the source of the above Flurry Index). As of this post date, we’re at a 41% ‘flurry index’. Absolutely unacceptable. If McDonald’s has any Six Sigma black belts in their employ, they would surely be freaking out at this defect rate.

Then, you can take these statistics and contact McDonalds corporate offices and vent frustration.

Do not take this lightly, people. The McFlurry needs to be ‘flurried’!!

Social Media Stats

A compilation of social media statistics and sound bytes from across the Internet.

  • Facebook currently has in excess of 350 million active users on global basis.Six months ago, this was 250m. This means over 40% growth in less than 6 months.
  • Flickr now hosts more than 4 billion images.
  • More than 35m Facebook users update their status each day.
  • Wikipedia currently has in excess of 14m articles, meaning that it’s 85,000 contributors have written nearly a million new posts in six months.
  • Photo uploads to Facebook have increased by more than 100%. Currently, there are around 2.5bn uploads to the site each month.
  • Back in 2009, the average user had 120 friends within Facebook. This is now around 130.
  • Mobile is even bigger than before for Facebook, with more than 65m users accessing the site through mobile-based devices. In six months, this is over 100% increase.
  • There are more than 3.5bn pieces of content (web links, news stories, blog posts, etc.) shared each week on Facebook.

The Story Behind The Netflix Contest

If you have the time, take a listen to Leo Laporte and Amber MacArthur’s Net @ Night podcast from last week. They had a great conversation with The Ensemble, the team who appears to have submitted the winning submission for the Netflix Prize. As they said repeatedly during the podcast, the suspense of the story is like a movie.

If you are not familiar, a few years ago Netflix announced a contest where they will award $1 Million to any individual or team who substantially improve[s] the accuracy of predictions about how much someone is going to love a movie based on their movie preferences. The minimum improvement in order to be considered for the grand prize is 10%.

The final results of the contest will be announced in September, once Netflix runs the algorithms of the top two submissions through a “pure” data set, in order to validate that the algorithm performance is not skewed by the data used during the contest period. Based on the final submissions, The Ensemble team has the highest improvement at 10.1%.