Sunday, November 27, 2005

Scratching my head...

While listening to "The Women of Smith" and reading G. Brooke's blog, I happened upon the Gender Genie, which purports to predict an author's gender with 80% accuracy.

After submitting my description of our trip to the reservation, it gave me the following score:

Female Score: 712
Male Score: 1498

The Gender Genie thinks the author of this passage is: male!

When I told it it was wrong, it replied:

That is one butch chick!

(I guess my ex was right....)

I'd love to know their rationale - on the breakdown of masculine and feminine words, "the" "is" "if" "in" and "this" showed up as masculine, while "him" "because" "since" and "too" were among the feminine keywords. Don't quite get that - what makes "is" masculine" and "am" feminine? I don't see any possible positive connection.

And now there's a part of me wondering "have I always been told I write well because I write masculinely?" That would be... disconcerting, at least.

Oh well.

[Later: my ice cream rant from this summer came in at Female: 517 Male: 2347, and even my "where are the books by women" rant came in at Female: 1389 Male: 1606. So content matter that might stereotypically or obviously be by a woman clearly has no effect, or at least little effect.]


Storm said...

It does say that you need to have text of at least 500 words for it to work properly. It was wrong the two times I entered my shorter blog entries and got my gender entry correct when I pasted my >500 words entries. So maybe you want to try again. Currently, I'm drawing the conclusion that if I don't talk enough people think I'm a woman ;).

Jane Ellen+ said...

I tried supplying several entries, as well as my most recent sermon. The Gender Genie gave the same results, every time.

"The Gender Genie thinks the author of this passage is: male!"

I have aspired to be many things in my life; a guy has never once been among them. And I do not believe being a coherent writer is gender-linked.

In short: phooey.

The Archer of the Forest said...

This is a crock!

I scored:
Female Score: 546
Male Score: 474

The kicker is, I used my latest blog entry, which is a rant about how us men hate to shop. If that program can't even figure that out, it must be worthless...

Tripp said...

The more focused or definitive the language the more masculine. Heh.

Needless to say, I blog like a girl.

Hope said...

So I tried the forgiveness sermon I'm writing for a class. 522 female, 577 male, so the gender genie thinks I write like a man, too. Then I looked and the stats for the gender genie say it right less than 60% of the time. Wouldn't blind guessing produce similar results?

Beth said...

Yeah - I used entries of 600-800 words, including one about being female, so there's nothing there.

I agree with Hope: while the genie claims to be 80% accurate, the stats show otherwise, and fall much closer to what I'd expect from blind guesses.