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Happy Valentine’s – Mathematicians Have Found A “Formula For Love”

Happy Valentine’s – Mathematicians Have Found A “Formula For Love”

This latest from Reuters is a little absurd, and you have to wonder if they timed this to release a few days before Valentine’s Day (crafty, crafty mathemeticians!).  Apparently, all self-help books on finding romance have been rendered obsolete – there is a formula for finding the “right age” to fall in love.  And yes, it has been nicknamed the “Fiancee Factor.”

The article is short, so I’m just going to quote most of it here:

“Although probability isn’t the most romantic basis for a marriage, the formula does seem to fit a lot of couples — whether through accident or design,” said the equation’s creator, Professor Tony Dooley at the University of New South Wales.

“There’s no reason why the science can’t be extended to calculate the best moment to marry,” Dooley said in a statement.

However, love birds take note, the mathematical equation for love only has a 37 percent success rate.

The formula is helpful as a guide for the right moment to start getting serious, but could also be used by nervous men to calculate when to avoid the ultimate commitment, said Dooley.”

It’s first of all pretty ridiculous to throw in at the end that this only has a 37% percentage of success.  And then the article, despite its short length and almost complete lack of information about the formula, manages to indulge in some damaging gender stereotypes – namely that men are nervous about commitment.  I’m sure that women’s biological clocks are a major factor as well.

More than anything, I think we can learn something from this formula: that vague math is not the solution for finding romantic love.  People do unexpected things – things that don’t figure into a neat mathematical formula.  I’m with the Jezebel writers on this one – let’s hope that Lori Gottlieb (the author of the new book on settling for Mr-Good-Enough) doesn’t find out about this.

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Photo from Wikimedia Commons.

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48 comments

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11:20PM PDT on Apr 13, 2010

very interesting

10:15AM PST on Feb 20, 2010

Do people really see marriage as a goal in life, so that it falls in the concern of "scientists"? Rather than ridiculous it is a little sad.

8:45AM PST on Feb 18, 2010

As everyone seems to understand this is CRAP. So are the other books on this subject. Money makers. Thats all. Love, Sex, Marraige come to individuals at differant times. I know of 17 yrolds who have and had serious relationships that worked. I know 35 yrold who never have had a serious relationship based on their own un-readiness. This is why we have single people who stay single all their lives. Love(marraige) should never be based on biological clocks or society pressures. True love should be based on compatability, understanding, change, adaptation, sharing, 50-50 decision making and great compatable SEX.If you disagree on sexual activity your relationship is doomed. I dont care what you say. SEX is the main activity for healthy relationships. Incompatable sex has been the reason for 80% of the divorces in the world. People seek other partners outside the marraige usually due to lack of or not satisfied in the sex department at home. I know from experiance. A healthy sexual relationship is a must prior to a life long commitment of marrige. Communication is a must as with honesty. The game of using sex as a pawn for gain is simply driving your mate out into anothers arms. If you dont gamble, you cannot win. Nothing is free. Give to get. Life is a gamble. Not everyone can be the high winner but we can be close if you are willing to try.

5:10PM PST on Feb 16, 2010

another dumb money burner

7:53PM PST on Feb 15, 2010

Typical meaningless news fluff, haha....

7:23PM PST on Feb 15, 2010

I don't believe that a formula for love exists...

12:09PM PST on Feb 15, 2010

dont believe in the formula

7:37PM PST on Feb 14, 2010

ok.....interesting..noe lets see if atleast this works for me!! lol....:D

4:01PM PST on Feb 14, 2010

Please define a "successful marriage."

2:38PM PST on Feb 14, 2010

Ther was an error. Something doesn't work that well her.

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