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Man Uses Math to Explain Girlfriend Woes
Fox News Charlotte ^ | 12 January 2010 | FRANK CARNEVALE

Posted on 01/13/2010 8:06:35 PM PST by Fractal Trader

A man studying in London has taken a mathematical equation that predicts the possibility of alien life in the universe to explain why he can't find a girlfriend.

Peter Backus , a native of Seattle and PhD candidate and Teaching Fellow in the Department of Economics at the University of Warwick, near London, in his paper, " Why I don't have a girlfriend: An application of the Drake Equation to love in the UK ," used math to estimate the number of potential girlfriends in the UK.

In describing the paper on the university Web site he wrote "the results are not encouraging. The probability of finding love in the UK is only about 100 times better than the probability of finding intelligent life in our galaxy."

Click Liverpool reported that Backus, 30, found that of the 30 million women in the UK, only 26 would be suitable girlfriends for him. His equation looked at the total number of women in the country, then narrowed it down using relevant factors including the number of women in London; the number of "age-appropriate" women (those aged between 24-34); women with a college degree; and those who Backus would find physically attractive.

In the paper Backus summarized that on a given night out in London there is a 0.0000034 percent chance of meeting a woman that meets his criteria and who is also interested in him. That makes his odds of finding a girlfriend only about 100 times better than finding an alien.

(Excerpt) Read more at foxcharlotte.com ...


TOPICS:
KEYWORDS: napl
Compares finding a mate to searching for ET. I wonder if it works for finding illegal aliens.
1 posted on 01/13/2010 8:06:35 PM PST by Fractal Trader
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To: Toddsterpatriot; Mase; expat_panama
0.0000034?

Way high.

2 posted on 01/13/2010 8:09:20 PM PST by 1rudeboy
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To: Fractal Trader

He’s also gay, which makes the odds even worse.


3 posted on 01/13/2010 8:10:58 PM PST by Kirkwood
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To: Fractal Trader

There’s an XKCD toon just waiting to be written here...


4 posted on 01/13/2010 8:12:07 PM PST by El Sordo
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To: 1rudeboy

Lower your standards....increase your odds.


5 posted on 01/13/2010 8:14:34 PM PST by lightman (Adjutorium nostrum (+) in nomine Domini)
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To: Fractal Trader
A man studying in London has taken a mathematical equation that predicts the possibility of alien life in the universe to explain why he can't find a girlfriend.

Classic scene from Survivor. Contestent Yul Kwon (while standing on a narrow wooden ledge on a pole 15' above the ground) explaining how the cube-square law disadvantages larger players and concluding "and that's why elephants can't run up tree-trunks < beat> I'm never, ever going to get a date again, am I?"

6 posted on 01/13/2010 8:15:05 PM PST by Oztrich Boy (Don't panic, the lunatics are in charge and have everything in hand.)
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To: Fractal Trader

It seems kind of silly to try to predict the possibility of an event occurring about which we have no real knowledge. I have no idea how any equation can possibly predict the probability of finding extraterrestrial life.

Therefore, the equation is also unlikely to predict the guy’s chances of finding a girlfriend.

However, there is a way to determine his chances, and it hardly requires math at all. Just show his pics to some females and observe their reactions. If he’s a long, greasy haired nerd with a bad complexion and unfashionable ill-fitting clothes, his chances are quite slim.


7 posted on 01/13/2010 8:15:40 PM PST by exDemMom (Now that I've finally accepted that I'm living a bad hair life, I'm more at peace with the world.)
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To: 1rudeboy
0.0000034? Way high.

By at least a factor of 1000. Maybe 1000000?

8 posted on 01/13/2010 8:16:07 PM PST by Toddsterpatriot (Math is hard. Harder if you're stupid.)
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Comment #9 Removed by Moderator

To: Fractal Trader

It ain’t the math buddy; try using a mirror.....


10 posted on 01/13/2010 8:18:09 PM PST by Calamari (Pass enough laws and everyone is guilty of something.)
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To: Calamari
I've narrowed my criteria to the essentials.

Big boobies.

11 posted on 01/13/2010 8:20:35 PM PST by MARTIAL MONK (I'm waiting for the POP!)
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To: lightman

12 posted on 01/13/2010 8:20:57 PM PST by RockinRight (The sleeping giant has been awoken, and he's PISSED.)
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To: Fractal Trader

Dear Peter,

I’m the woman at the bar reading a book on astrophysics and drinking an Irish Coffee.

If I may suggest: stop looking for the ideal woman. Why? Because she is looking for the ideal man. Do you get it now? They don’t exist.

Instead make friends with women you meet. After all, if you do marry one of them you’ll have someone fairly agreable with which to live.

If all your relationship is based upon is her attractiveness and your libido, well here’s a hint - neither will last. The world is filled with beautiful divorced women whose ex-husbands think they’re both stupid and difficult.

Better to marry a woman who, if she were a man, would be your best friend. Looks and libido soon fade; friendships tend to endure.


13 posted on 01/13/2010 8:21:25 PM PST by SatinDoll (NO Foreign Nationals as our President!!)
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To: Fractal Trader

Brings to mind the words of a professor of mine in grad school talking about not finding an exact solution to an equation - something like ‘As with marriage, you sometimes have to find a reasonable approximation and go with it.”


14 posted on 01/13/2010 8:31:58 PM PST by posterchild (Endowed by my Creator with certain unalienable rights.)
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To: Kirkwood

“He’s also gay, which makes the odds even worse.”

Then, he’s looking in the wrong city & zip codes.


15 posted on 01/13/2010 8:32:29 PM PST by combat_boots (The Lion of Judah cometh. Hallelujah. Gloria Patri, Filio et Spirito Sancto.)
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To: exDemMom

” If he’s a long, greasy haired nerd with a bad complexion and unfashionable ill-fitting clothes, his chances are quite slim.”

Well, I am a long-haired nerd with the worst complexion you ever saw - in fact, I am hopped up on prednizone and cipro right now, trying to improve things. Hey look, a chicken! Wait, let’s go paint the house!

And my clothes are dismal - you would not believe it. My underwear is older than my kids. So is my shirt. And I rarely wear shoes.

It seems somebody fell for the schtick.


16 posted on 01/13/2010 8:33:53 PM PST by patton (Obama has replaced "Res Publica" with "Quod licet Jovi non licet bovi.")
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To: lightman

Go Ugly Early

was the moto of some of my squadron mates.


17 posted on 01/13/2010 8:35:46 PM PST by lack-of-trust
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To: All

I did this same equation 25 years ago after looking at what?
Carl Sagans equations of alien life. Very easy, degreed in Math


18 posted on 01/13/2010 8:37:52 PM PST by Sporaticus
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To: SatinDoll
Better to marry a woman who, if she were a man, would be your best friend.

I'm not sure that approach will work for him either, since in my experience most young scientists want to talk about their incomprehensible work aaaaalll the time, and their best friends tend also to be scientists working in the same field so they can understand each other.

He's an attractive lad, but his problems are not unique or surprising. The more educated and intelligent one is, the fewer potential mates will be available. This young man is probably in the top one-tenth of one percent of the population in terms of intelligence, so there aren't going to be many people, male or female, who can keep up with him intellectually. If he's like almost every other hard-science PhD candidate, he probably obsesses about his research 24-7-365 and might not be able to talk about anything else at this point in his life, which will make him a dead bore as well as generally inexperienced compared to other young men of his age.

But eventually most of these guys end up getting married to somebody who supports and tolerates their work.

19 posted on 01/13/2010 8:39:25 PM PST by ottbmare (I could agree wth you, but then we'd both be wrong.)
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To: Kirkwood

He isn’t gay, those Brits just sound like poofters.


20 posted on 01/13/2010 8:45:16 PM PST by donmeaker (Invicto)
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To: SatinDoll
Better to marry a woman who...

Single, celibate, and sane work well also.

/johnny

21 posted on 01/13/2010 8:50:06 PM PST by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: lightman

“Lower your standards....increase your odds.”

As in...she has a great personality.


22 posted on 01/13/2010 9:02:15 PM PST by Rembrandt (.. AND the donkey you rode in on.)
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To: Fractal Trader

Less time at the blackboard working on arcane equations, more time in the student union drinking coffee and chatting.......


23 posted on 01/13/2010 9:02:53 PM PST by Intolerant in NJ
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To: Fractal Trader

A little prayer might raise the odds.


24 posted on 01/13/2010 9:03:12 PM PST by smokingfrog (Don't mess with the mocking bird! - http://tiny.cc/freepthis)
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To: ottbmare

“The more educated and intelligent one is, the fewer potential mates will be available.”

Try being a big-busted red-head with a genius IQ.


25 posted on 01/13/2010 9:03:22 PM PST by SatinDoll (NO Foreign Nationals as our President!!)
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To: Fractal Trader

Does he include the location where he usually hangs out in the evening or weekends to his model? If he never goes anywhere, instead just stay at home and calculate the probability of meeting a woman of that age group and educational background, it’s no wonder that the probability to find a girlfriend becomes asymptote...


26 posted on 01/13/2010 9:04:07 PM PST by paudio (Road to hell is paved by unintended consequences of good intentions)
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To: Fractal Trader

Tell women you’re rich, and your odds will improve dramatically.


27 posted on 01/13/2010 9:12:41 PM PST by matt1234
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To: donmeaker

It was a joke.


28 posted on 01/13/2010 9:36:47 PM PST by Kirkwood
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To: matt1234

Yes, AKA the Tiger Woods weighting factor.


29 posted on 01/13/2010 9:39:16 PM PST by Kirkwood
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To: Fractal Trader
Photobucket
30 posted on 01/13/2010 9:42:38 PM PST by IYellAtMyTV (Workday Forecast--Increasing pressure towards afternoon. Rum likely by evening.)
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To: Intolerant in NJ
Less time at the blackboard working on arcane equations, more time in the student union drinking coffee beer and chatting.......

The student unions usually have the largest bars in the area... and 5 or 6 pints makes the women look a lot more attractive...:^)

They are not dry like US universities.

31 posted on 01/13/2010 10:03:11 PM PST by az_gila (AZ - one Governor down... we don't want her back...)
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To: Kirkwood

As was my comment.


32 posted on 01/13/2010 10:14:01 PM PST by donmeaker (Invicto)
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To: smokingfrog

true, smokingfrog, he should go to church.

My husband’s bf used to complain about how there were no good women. Even if he ever found a potential girlfriend, they’d always do him wrong. Years had gone by, and there was no one for him. No one, no one, no one.

Where do you look, T? I asked him.

“Bars. . .” he answered.


33 posted on 01/14/2010 12:12:58 AM PST by Marie2 (The second mouse gets the cheese.)
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To: SatinDoll

Might work for a girl. For a guy, the big-busted thing is probably a handicap.


34 posted on 01/14/2010 12:25:06 AM PST by patton (Obama has replaced "Res Publica" with "Quod licet Jovi non licet bovi.")
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To: Slings and Arrows

Not-A-Ping????


35 posted on 01/14/2010 12:47:58 AM PST by The SISU kid (I feel really homesick all the time & so do all the other aliens.....)
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To: The SISU kid; El Sordo; MeekOneGOP; Conspiracy Guy; DocRock; King Prout; Darksheare; OSHA; ...


36 posted on 01/14/2010 1:32:57 AM PST by Slings and Arrows (HALP UZ AL GOR. PLEEZ SEND GLOBUL WARMING.)
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To: 1rudeboy
The guy lowered his return by limiting his search area. 

Years ago I used the same formula but began with the 3 billion women in the entire world before narrowing down.   It came out to about a couple dozen good candidates, and dividing by the world's 60 million mi.2 land mass gave me a possible wife for every 2,400  mi.2.  So the odds were that I had to be willing to travel at least a couple thousand miles to find a good wife, so I did and lived happily ever after.

37 posted on 01/14/2010 5:53:59 AM PST by expat_panama
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To: SatinDoll

You can complain about it to me all night long. And how many standard deviations above the norm is your IQ. I figure if we are within a few points it shouldn’t matter.


38 posted on 01/14/2010 6:41:43 AM PST by rmlew (Democracy tends to ignore..., threats to its existence because it loathes doing what is needed)
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To: mylife

Just sent that to a Brit friend. EPIC LOLs.


39 posted on 01/14/2010 7:26:12 AM PST by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
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To: Slings and Arrows; Fractal Trader
Occam:

40 posted on 01/14/2010 7:41:56 AM PST by Lady Jag (Double your income. Fire the government)
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To: lightman
Lower your standards....increase your odds

Tip a few beers and the problem disappears............

41 posted on 01/14/2010 7:46:56 AM PST by Lakeshark (Thank a member of the US armed forces for their sacrifice)
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To: SatinDoll

“Try being a big-busted red-head with a genius IQ.”

no thanks, but I amwilling to date one! :-)

I have rocket scientist friends, they never talk about work (because it’s classified) and they are never boring. This simple restriction has forced them to expand their horizons.

The Brit nerd boy should try pretending his work is classified (IE stop talking about it) and look someplace other than bars. start joining clubs, the hiking club, the singing club, the biking club...


42 posted on 01/14/2010 8:37:11 AM PST by lack-of-trust
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To: lack-of-trust

“The Brit nerd boy should try pretending his work is classified (IE stop talking about it) and look someplace other than bars...”

Very good point!


43 posted on 01/14/2010 10:52:45 AM PST by SatinDoll (NO Foreign Nationals as our President!!)
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To: rmlew

My deviations are never standard, run-of-the-mill!

(Sorry, couldn’t help myself!)


44 posted on 01/14/2010 10:55:31 AM PST by SatinDoll (NO Foreign Nationals as our President!!)
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To: SatinDoll

Now you’re just flirting ;-)


45 posted on 01/14/2010 3:40:55 PM PST by rmlew (Democracy tends to ignore..., threats to its existence because it loathes doing what is needed)
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