Friday, February 14, 2014

What I've Been Reading

Optimal Cupid: Mastering the Hidden Logic of OkCupid by Christopher Mckinlay. After reading about how Mckinlay used math and python to hack okcupid, I was obviously interested in knowing how he did that.

I love OkCupid. Their stated purpose is: “ We use math to get you dates. ” It should be: “ You use math to get your own dates .” I used math to improve my OkC experience and went on 88 dates from the site in three months. I went from an OkCupid “match percentage” at or above 90% with a few hundred women in L.A. to matching over 30,000 women at that level. It was like stepping into a giant spotlight of female attention.

I was disappointed a little since the book mostly covers on dating tips more than specify math and programming. But if you are looking to date with or without coding and math skills, this book would still help since Mckinlay has some great insights.
  • Simulated annealing is a robust method for finding approximately optimal solutions in large search spaces, such as the space of all possible responses to match questions on OkC.
  • I mined the data I’d scraped from OkC, using a method called Latent Dirichlet Allocation to extract common topics of interest from the profiles in my cluster of interest.
  • An abysmally low match percentage never stopped anyone. But this is what scripting languages are for. Write some python code to periodically delete messages from anyone matching you below some threshold. I think I actually have a script that does this somewhere. Let me know if you’re in need of one and I’ll send it to you.
And yeah Happy Valentines day to all of you !!

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