Escape Velocity Episode 4 “The Love Algorithm”

| February 14, 2017

Thornton graduate student teams up with USC ISI data scientists to break down the hidden factors that will help him find true love

Engineers as the new matchmakers? Now, that’s not that far fetched. Illustration by Michelle Henry

Love is often frustrating and intangible. But what if love was quantifiable? And if so, how long would it last? Do opposites attract or do they just attack? And who should you trust in love: your gut, aunt Margie, or math?

In this episode of Escape Velocity, USC Thornton School of Music graduate student and composer, Wil Brumbach, goes on a search for love enlisting the help of some powerful matchmakers – engineers. He tests the hypothesis of a love formula through highly scientific means – by putting himself “out there” and consulting with Aram Galstyan and Greg Ver Steeg of the USC Information Sciences Institute. The Department of Computer Science duo, both former physicists, are using methods inspired by quantum physics to improve the matchmaking algorithms that run eHarmony, one of the country’s most successful online dating sites.

Responsible for nearly 5% of marriages in America, the engineers at eHarmony are on a quest to manufacture the ultimate love algorithm that can predict happy, long lasting relationships. Can they help Wil find his happily ever after?

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Support for Escape Velocity comes from the United Engineering Foundation – advancing the engineering arts and sciences for the welfare of humanity since 1904.