DailyDirt: Modern Computer Dating

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

There are search engines for just about everything. Computers help people find all sorts of things faster and easier, so it's not surprising that computer dating is decades old (and started out with punch cards). Technology has gotten a lot better, but has online dating really improved that much? By the way, StumbleUpon can recommend some good Techdirt articles, too.


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    skinny poppy (profile), Jun 7th, 2012 @ 5:27pm

    You can't buy a soul mate. Last time I checked, prostitution is still illegal in every state but Nevada.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Jun 7th, 2012 @ 7:29pm

      Re:

      Speaking of which, a word of warning for anyone who might be wanting to see "Jessica Full Figured Beauy" (sic) (phone 417-209-****) in Springfield, Missouri: DON'T. What an ill-tempered, hateful paranoiac!

       

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      pdh, Jun 7th, 2012 @ 11:16pm

      Re:

      prostitution may be illegal..
      But it's fine as long as you film it. The (I'm just making a porno) defence.

       

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    :Lobo Santo (profile), Jun 7th, 2012 @ 5:30pm

    Electric Gonorhea, the noisy killer.

    Also, dating a computer is 'creepy' so if you ever want a real boy/girl-friend, just don't date computers.

     

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      davebarnes (profile), Jun 8th, 2012 @ 6:25am

      I am more concerned about intra-computer dating

      My biggest fear is that computers will date each other. First they date and they copulate and their offspring is Skynet.
      I saw that movie. Computer dating should be outlawed.

       

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    abc gum, Jun 7th, 2012 @ 5:45pm

    "In 2005, Steven Carter, the director of research at eHarmony, described how his work to create predictive models for compatibility became the basis of his dream job

    Perhaps he should've spent more time on website security

     

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    Anonymous Howard, Jun 7th, 2012 @ 5:54pm

    The first article is terrible - extremely biased and self-serving. This sentence also stuck out to me, and I couldn't focus on the article for a while: "Dating sites may be making more money than ever before, but it was only in 1999 that the music business peaked years after the medium that would kill it first emerged."

    The third article is half-interesting; the last half of it makes some pretty bold claims without substantiating them. I would have like to see some proof rather than a plug for his book, but I guess that's NPR.

    For the bias of the second article, it at least wasn't overtly pushing a point. Yes, he's still operating on the assumption that a predictive model is possible, but it doesn't come across as unapologetic promotion of his site.

    Overall, not a very interesting collection of articles, though perhaps I'M biased because dating, as an activity or topic of conversation, simply doesn't interest me.

    I'll give Cook some credit - the relationship I've had for a year did indeed spring up out of a friendship. So perhaps the question people should be asking themselves is not "How can I find my one true love?" but "How can I be a better friend?" I think the answer to this is simply to better understand yourself and the people around you - learning why people act the way they do.

    Since the point is perhaps to examine the influence of technology on dating, I'll also mention that my friendship started online. I do not believe, however, that technology offers much outside of greater exposure, as far as relationships go - rushing into a relationship online or in real life seems like it would have about the same success rate.

     

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    JoeCool (profile), Jun 7th, 2012 @ 5:57pm

    But experts also scoffed at the first chess-playing computers, too.

    We can't even quantify the rules for relationships, so I think a successful match is just slightly harder to calculate than the next chess move. ;)

     

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      :Lobo Santo (profile), Jun 7th, 2012 @ 6:03pm

      Re: But experts also scoffed at the first chess-playing computers, too.

      We can't yet quantify the rules for relationships .

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Jun 7th, 2012 @ 11:06pm

      Re: But experts also scoffed at the first chess-playing computers, too.

      Btw, I've seen property agents building softwares to aid their customers choose house. I'd think a it's somewhat similar (except there aren't much objective criteria listed for comparison).

       

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    Anonymous, Jun 7th, 2012 @ 7:12pm

    It's all a scam.

     

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    Wally (profile), Jun 7th, 2012 @ 8:31pm

    Online Dating

    There already an online dating service that most people don't think about when they use it. Believe it or not, it's FaceBook.

    I met my Wife on FaceBook through a mutual friend she and I had. She was not on my friends list and she made a comment that made me laugh. I friended her there immediately and it took 7 days of those awkward "hi, how you doing?" chats. We finally made it to the weekend and broke the ice. We found a lot of common ground (both of us have Asperger's Syndrome) and for an entire week we stayed up until 4am just chatting. It was getting close to Valentines Day and we had decided to meet each other at a half way point between our Appartments (she lives about 90 miles away from me). It was our first date. I was so excited that I felt as giddy as a school boy around her as we paraded together around the outlet stores.

    There is one quip pro quo to doing online dating that I really don't like. You do not have the same references to the person other than what they write, and you have to pay a fee to get to know someone. At least with Facebook and through the mutual friend system, you can ask people about the person who just friended you. And its absolutely free. My wife (God bless her) actually asked my friend if I was a creep before she knew me.

    The rules regarding FaceBook are simply know her mutual acquaintances IN REAL LIFE.

    Someone is bound to ask me "Why not date someone you know well?". My only answer to this is that you already know about this person, whereas an acquaintance, you hardly know the person. I find the best way to get to know someone is when you haven't known them all your life and may or in my case may not of heard of them until that one special comment that makes you LOL.

     

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      Androgynous Cowherd, Jun 7th, 2012 @ 10:51pm

      Re: Online Dating

      I'm dubious about the likely success rate for the general population with this. For one thing, your pool of potential partners through this method is quite small and might be quickly exhausted without results. For another, geography could be a big obstacle, depending if your FB contacts are widely disseminated or are mostly in your own area.

      On the other hand, it's probably better and certainly cheaper than getting a membership at imadesperateloserbutpleasedatemeanyway.com or meetadesperatefatgirl.com or wherever. :)

       

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      Schmorgluck (profile), Jun 8th, 2012 @ 11:14am

      Re: Online Dating

      There's also forums, especially fandom forums, that gather people who, while not necessarily totally like-minded, share some common points of interest (at least one - the fandom at hand - but most likely more). When you add IRL meetings to this, it sometimes leads to nice encounters. I know of at least three long-standing couples that started like that, plus a handful that lasted a little while, just from one forum.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Jun 8th, 2012 @ 9:14pm

        Re: Re: Online Dating

        Again, geography seems likely to be an insurmountable barrier in these cases, and more so than with Facebook. If your FB friends are mostly local to your area, and so are theirs, then a fair fraction of your more indirect FB contacts (friends of friends, etc.) are likely to be local. On the other hand with an internet forum there's no geographic bias beyond the one induced by the forum's language bias. With an English-language forum, for example, you'll get a huge number of people from across North America, a fair number from the UK, New Zealand, and Australia, and a smattering from everywhere else with net access. Even supposing nearly everyone is in NA in practice the mean distance to a contact will be measured in the thousands of km (if you're in NA; if not, make it tens of thousands). And that creates nearly insurmountable barriers to having a relationship with nearly everyone else there.

        First, dating will be very expensive. Plane tickets cost hundreds of dollars. Driving seems cheaper at first, but the gas cost these days is still likely to come to over one hundred, plus it becomes a week-long trip. How much money do you lose if you miss a week of work off without pay? If you're unemployed the missed work disappears as a problem, but you're also unlikely to be able to afford the gas (or even have a car at all, and bussing will cost nearly as much as a plane, and be slower and more inconvenient, though the TSA is working hard to make air travel just as bad). And if they are intercontinental unless you're rich you're SOL. Plane tickets across oceans cost a fortune, you'll have to miss days of work anyway at those distances, and going by ship would mean missing weeks of work.

        OK, suppose you're rich then, or at least wealthy enough to be able to afford weekly two-way plane tickets to Metroville, The Other Coast or car/bus trips to Small City, The Other End Of Your Own Coast. The relationship gets serious; you've really hit it off. Now what?

        Now, one of you has to quit his or her current job and go through the ardurous, slow, and expensive process of moving to a new city. Whoever it is will lose their current local social support network. In this economy there is likely to be a long time before he or she manages to get a new job. For a long time, whoever moves will be at the mercy of their new romantic partner, utterly dependent on them for financial and social support, having been uprooted and transplanted away from all previous cheap-to-access support and sources of income. It's going to be painful no matter what, ending long friendships and workplace relationships, and it's a significant gamble. It's very likely neither person will be willing to go through that, and that makes the relationship DOA.

        And now, what if one of you did move? Then what? Already, a commitment bigger than most marriages has been made, but in a one-sided manner with one partner taking on all of the downside and risk -- jumping there straight from "seeing each other maybe once a week"! If there are ANY problems at all this asymmetry is going to create serious psychological/relationship issues. And Murphy's Law says there will inevitably be problems. Likely, the problems, combined with the asymmetric commitment, will drive a wedge straight through the relationship, and it will implode messily.

        Failing that, it becoming an unhealthy codependent relationship seems likely to be an-ever present risk, unless the transplanted partner quickly finds a job and develops local friendships and contacts in the new city that are independent of his or her partner.

        Of course, the above issues are generic to long-distance relationships. The point is that they are very severe obstacles, combined with the fact that pretty much [i]all[/i] web-forum-originating relationships are bound to be long-distance unless the forum is on a local-interest topic or in a language spoken in only a tiny geographic area.

        So, if you're going to go the forum route, all I can recommend is that you don't.

        Failing that, your best bet would be to move to northern France and learn Basque.

         

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          Wally (profile), Jun 8th, 2012 @ 9:42pm

          Re: Re: Re: Online Dating

          "First, dating will be very expensive. Plane tickets cost hundreds of dollars. Driving seems cheaper at first, but the gas cost these days is still likely to come to over one hundred, plus it becomes a week-long trip."

          1. My cousin flew to his current wife, racked up Delta Frequent Flying Miles, used those miles to go on a honeymoon :-)

          2. My wife was definitely worth the 80 to 90 mile drive :-) And it was like a mini vacation for me each trip up or for her, each trip down.

          The point is, dating costs money....but the long term relationship that grows will last a lifetime :-)

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Jun 9th, 2012 @ 1:29am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Online Dating

            The point is, not everyone has money, or can afford the extra time off work. Frequent Flyer Miles? A very large fraction of Americans are too busy worrying about keeping their mortgage payments up and avoiding losing their house, car, job, or all three to consider Frequent Flyer Miles to be anything but a distant, luxurious prospect that might interest them if they ever manage to somehow end up a financially secure middle-class person. Or not even that; they just see them as yet one more perk that the one percent get to enjoy.

            So, anyone got a useful online dating suggestion applicable for the 99%? ... Anyone? ...

             

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    Stephen Pate, Jun 8th, 2012 @ 2:48am

    eHarmony success

    eHarmony is all hype. Beautiful ads but a deeply flawed process that misleads people.

    In one case it matched a woman with a suspect in her murder.

    Pamela Butler didn't know Jose Cruz was suffering from PTSD and had a violent past. eHarmony missed that in their scientific screening.

    http://njnnetwork.com/2010/04/pamela-j-butler-still-missing-from-washington-dc/

     

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    trish, Jun 8th, 2012 @ 6:28am

    dont look for love, let it find you

     

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      Anonymous, Jun 8th, 2012 @ 1:59pm

      Re: dont look for love, let it find you

      Love? I've grown up and no longer believe in such fairy tales.

       

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        Wally (profile), Jun 8th, 2012 @ 9:49pm

        Re: Re: dont look for love, let it find you

        Ok, if you keep looking for it, it really won't come. It causes one to psychologically try too hard for love. If you can talk till 4 AM with him or her due to flow, take the chance :-)

         

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        Wally (profile), Jun 8th, 2012 @ 10:03pm

        Re: Re: dont look for love, let it find you

        Ok, if you keep looking for it, it really won't come. It causes one to psychologically try too hard for love. If you can talk till 4 AM with him or her due to flow, take the chance :-)

         

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