Segments in this Video

Looking for Love (02:49)


Internet dating generates over two billion dollars a year and over one million people log onto dating sites. Dr. Hannah Fry decides to test the mathematical algorithm that matchmaking sites employ using Dr. Xand van Tulleken as her subject. Horizon invited fifty singles to a dating event in London. (Credits)

37 and Single (02:50)

Tulleken attended eight weddings in the past year and is lonely. Some dating sites are a catalog of strangers, but others claim to have an algorithm to determine compatibility. Fry plans to use applied mathematics to find Tulleken a partner.

Types of Dating Websites (02:06)

With Tinder, Zoosk, and Happn, individuals can reject others immediately based upon their profiles. EHarmony, Lovestruck, and Ok Cupid utilizes algorithms to determine compatibility. Fry builds Tulleken a dating website with the help of her colleague, Tom Russell.

Optimal Stopping Theory (04:42)

Fry explains to Tulleken that the best search strategy is to reject the first 37% of potential partners and then choose the next woman who he feels suits him best. Tulleken applies the formula to a commercial dating site. He goes on a date with the woman he selects, but it was not a match.

Choosing Based on Looks (04:31)

Internet daters discuss first impressions and bias that occurs based on an individual's photo. Chris Olivola explains that appearing fun and outgoing is important to women. Based upon his research, Olivola suggests Tulleken smile and raise his eyebrows.

The Dating Profile (03:52)

Using Khalid Khan's tips on creating an online profile, Sameer Chaudry found a committed relationship within three dates. Khan recommends creating a username that starts with a, b, or c. Do not appear submissive or kind, demonstrate courageousness, and show a sense of humor in a profile— women prefer bravery to altruism.

The Horizon Dating Website (02:13)

The Horizon algorithm takes into account a detailed questionnaire, which allows individuals to rate how important certain characteristics are in a potential date. Fry worries that Tulleken does not know what he wants in a partner.

Not Published Yet (03:50)

Dr. Helen Fisher examines the brain to determine what changes occur when an individual is in love and now claims to have a personality survey that matches potential partners. Tulleken discovers he should look for a female explorer.

MRI Scans (04:46)

Tulleken and his brother undergo MRI scans to prove that Dr. Lucy Brown can determine when an individual is in love. His brother demonstrates he is madly in love with his wife and does not think logically about her. Tulleken's brain shows he possesses the capacity for love, but does not love his ex-girlfriend.

Horizon Dating Website Opens (02:20)

A small portion of those who signed up will be invited to the event to test the algorithm. Fry believes she found two or three potential dates for Tulleken. Online daters explain that an algorithm cannot test for chemistry.

More Sophisticated Dating Websites (03:09)

Eli Finkel cautions that dating websites have not produced any evidence that the algorithms used create more compatible relationships, but feels that websites like EHarmony do a good job sifting out undesirable potential partners.

Picking a Date (04:21)

Tulleken creates a shortlist from the profiles on the Horizon dating website. Fry invites 50 individuals to an event to determine whether her algorithm is effective. After the experiment, she discovers that the algorithm helped people enjoy themselves.

Best Matches (02:48)

Tulleken announces the attendee's best possible match according to the algorithm. After speaking to each other, the results were mixed. The match with the highest percentage of compatibility decided to keep in touch.

Tulleken's Dates (04:37)

Tulleken enjoys spending time with the woman he picked from the dating website, but is not certain about continuing the relationship. He did not feel a spark with the algorithm's choice based upon compatibility.

Conclusions: How to Find Love Online (02:03)

Tulleken really enjoyed the date with Cindy and feels nervous because she has not responded to his request for another date. Fry concludes that the algorithm can help compatible people find each other, but cannot predict if there will be a spark between them. Tulleken and Becky went on a second date.

Credits: How to Find Love Online (00:43)

Credits: How to Find Love Online

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How to Find Love Online

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Internet dating has transformed our love lives. One in five committed couples meet on the internet and 91 million of us around the world log on to internet dating sites. Dr. Xand van Tulleken is one of them. An expert in public health issues at Fordham University in New York, he is hopelessly single, and looking for love. Can Dr Hannah Fry, lecturer in mathematics at University College London, use her statistical know-how to help secure him the partner of his dreams?

Length: 53 minutes

Item#: BVL124907

ISBN: 978-1-63521-905-0

Copyright date: ©2016

Closed Captioned

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