Metataste is a discovery platform for movie lovers. With a hand-picked movie-cart comprising of 51786 films from 196 countries, distributed over 24 Genres, including lots of award winning short films, documentaries of both foreign and regional languages etc. which can be watched on Metataste itself , it surely has given the movie-watching experience, a makeover. It also provides links to online stores like Amazon and iTunes.
Launched on Guy Fawkes Day; i.e. 5th November 2011, it has captured the eye of the audience, and thrives to live in their hearts since then.
Take one… and Action…
Like so many others preceding them, they were bitten by the entrepreneurial bug and wanted to create a product of their own. And just like those others, they stood before the wall that had ‘what do we make?’ splattered across it. They began by jotting down their interests and skills on a page, and narrowing the options. The word ‘FILMS’ kept appearing on every sheet. Their love for films and shared history of disappointing film discovery services on the web, made the choice obvious.
Meet The Crew!
The current MindGrep team consists of 9 people, and is growing. Of those, four are also working on Metataste.
The Metataste team consists of:
Pratyush Singh – Film bank, designer and product manager
Ayush Ghai – Philosophising team leader at MindGrep, (Mr. Any Tasks)
Avneesh Raghav – The lead workaholic/technologist
Akash Yadav – The emotional server side expert.
And That’s How it Works…
When a user mentions 3 films he or she loves, Metataste’s recommendation engine shows them other films the user might like. One can filter down the list of films by Genres, Year, Language etc to further narrow down to the movie one wants to watch.
Each film on Metataste is tagged with Genres, Sub-Genres, mood of the film; Bittersweet, Mind & Soul etc. and highlights of a film, like Class Differences, Introspection, Supernatural Powers etc. Their ever growing, custom-made dictionary is used to map all films. These elements combined with directors, writers, era, language etc make up the taste knowledge for each user. The user rating films or marking them as favourite contributes to improving that knowledge and hence the ever improving recommendations.
“For a few weeks I used MT without signing up and I was satisfied. But then I signed up and found even more amazing utilities inside. I don’t know how big a team you people are. But working from Dharamshala, you guys have totally nailed it!”
“Metataste’s film recommendations are bafflingly accurate!”
“Love your site. I hate !@#$ because of its look (ugly as a hatful of !@#$%^&*, as my poetic granddad would say). MT feels like something I want to sit in front of. Great work guys.”
The user feedback, whether direct or indirect, has always been generally very encouraging for the team. The product is successful as their users have been loyally returning and spending over 20 minutes in a session on average. The users steadily trickle in through word of mouth. Presently the figures which speak highly of Metataste today are 10% of what they envision to build.
The team believes in working on Metataste with full heart, and no expectations. They just want to build a service for movie lovers that they are personally proud of. Metataste intends to extend the service to regional providers as well.
On Revenue Streams
For the team, Metataste is a love project. Hence at the moment, they are focusing on rolling out their next release and pushing subsequent features as fast as they can. It is possible that they might put a donate button though so that they can afford a good full stack developer for Metataste.
On Lessons learnt
They have learnt some invaluable lessons throughout the Metataste journey, like-
- The importance of having a good team. They believe that for the success of any organization, the team is most important.
- Careful planning must precede execution.
- Don’t get caught in perfecting that code/design. Get it out! Learn. Iterate. Get it out.
- Don’t run after money.
- Follow your heart.
Metataste speaks for itself…
Going by their organic growth philosophy, the users and the features of Metataste are more than enough to promote it. But the team wants to keep enhancing Metataste based on customer feedback and our vision. Rest, they plan to leave to serendipity.
Next month (Sep-2013) they have a major release coming up that includes many new exciting features and a cool new interface. One new feature the team is kicked about is the statistics derived from the user’s activity on Metataste. The user will be able to see top actors, directors, writers, genres etc in his or her list of favourites/ watched/ want to watch lists.
In their words, “We are very excited about the times ahead!”
So settle yourself on your couches, and get ready for an enthralling movie watching experience, that will surely leave you satisfied!