Five Labs

See The Personality Behind Your Facebook Posts

Five Labs is an online experiment to raise awareness about the amount of personal information that can be gleaned from the language you use on social media.

We used a scientific model to predict your personality from your Facebook wall posts. The model might sound complicated, but the web app is easy to understand. You log in with your Facebook account, then we analyze (but never store) your wall posts with machine learning and predict your personality.

Designing a Trustworthy Experience

Five Labs examines the linguistic content of Facebook wall posts, pulling key words to make strikingly accurate estimates about individual personalities.

A Distinct Call-to-Action

The homepage uses a split screens design with two side-by-side selectable options. The left side contains the branding/copywriting with a clear call-to-action button: “analyze my post”. The right side has a metaphor of the product. Scrolling down the page will take you to a set of interactive graphics explaining the app.

Split screens landing page.

Privacy Policy

A key constraint I had to develop against was trust (why would you give permission to sign in with your Facebook account into an unknown app?). I had to reassure users about their experiences on the app. With this challenge in mind I decided to use a modal that explains what the app is doing.

Modal explaining Five Labs privacy terms.

Loading The Data

After logging into Facebook, the app generates a graphic representation of your personality. Since this process could take up to 20 seconds, I designed this loading process to show users the different steps of their profile generation: contacting Facebook, establishing a secure connection, receiving wall posts, analyzing words and generating profile.

Loading process right after logging into Facebook.

Graphic Representation of The Data

Five analyzes the language in which we write, and determines our relative affiliation to five personality traits: openness, extraversion, agreeableness,conscientiousness and neuroticism, know as the Big Five.

Radar chart

I used a radar chart shape to represent the 5 different personality traits. Each radar chart is unique for every users. Users can click on a trait to discover a bar chart showing the trait average % for users and public figures.

Profile view.

Bar chart showing the trait average % for users and public figures.

Profile Comparison

The app lets you compare your own personality traits to those of your friends and public figures, such as President Barack Obama and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Mark Cuban and I are 71% similar — apparently he's a lot more nerotic and conscientious than I am.


One of the main goals was getting users to share their graphic representations. With 4 distinct share buttons and a custom URL for each comparison, users can easily share their profile comparison on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn). Share pages don't require login and we setup custom og:images to create rich and structured stories.

Custom og:image for each URLs.


The webapp was launched on June 11th, 2014 at 5 AM PST. It was an experiment to demonstrate how people express themselves online and what the big web companies might see when they look at us.

We took down Five Labs on July 20th, 2014 and removed all stored personality data.

200M+ profile generated

Five Labs generated personality profiles for over 200 million people. The app generated attention from journalists at the New York Times, Wired and NBC.

The response to Five Labs helped us arrive at our biggest insight: that people want a comfortable place to express themselves without being analyzed for commercial purposes.

We then shifted our goals towards developing Five, a mobile application focused on private social experiences. You can learn more about Five under the Work tab of my page.