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Calculating Optimal Love: A Mathimatician’s Viewpoint on Finding a Lifelong Mate


Love is a powerful motivator. Ultimately, our lives are spent seeking out love from friends and family; and if we are single, life is a continuous search for “the one” that we can live with, build a family with and seek love from every day.

If you are single, finding a lifelong mate isn’t easy. As a matter of fact, it is one of the most difficult life decisions to be made based on experience. When seeking out “the one”, we date potential lifelong mates and pass judgement upon them. Judgements are often based on feelings, problem solving compatibilities and how the individual compares to previous dates. By process of elimination, we determine “the one” who will best suit our future family needs.

The process of elimination while dating can be tough and sometimes, never-ending. You can spend your whole life looking for a mate and being unhappy with your single life. This dating problem is often caused by the fear of not knowing if you will meet another mate that suits your family needs better than the mate that you are currently dating. Therefore, you always think that you will meet a better mate and never stop dating.

Although there is no way to predict the future, mathimatical formulas exist that provide guidance on how to determine when to stop looking and when to settle on a lifelong mate. One mathimatical dating solution that uses an optimal stopping equation is “The Secretary Problem”. Mathimaticians believe that the optimal time to stop dating and settle on a mate can be equated by utilizing the “The Secretary Problem”. As a result of solving the equation below, you will figure out the optimal number of individuals that you should date before stopping and settling on a secretary or lifelong mate.

Step 1: Estimate how many people you could date in your life, n.

Step 2: Calculate the square root of that number, √n.

Step 3: Date and reject the first √n people; the best of them will set your benchmark.

Step 4: Continue dating people and settle down with the first person to exceed the benchmark set by the initial √n dates.

Everybody wants to find the optimal “secretary”, but not everybody can do the math of optimal stopping. I am by far a mathimatical genius, but figuring out this mathimatical equation of optimal stopping is one service that I can provide to everyone in the dating game. Would you like to be my customer? Feel free to contact me at your convenience.

As for myself, I am too lazy to even date anyone, nevermind calculate the optimal time to stop and settle down with a lifelong mate. It would be nice to have a microwave that could solve this type of equation for me. In the future, I will consider writing optimal stopping software. Possibly, dating websites will consider implementing the solution. If only they will hire me.

Resources
The Secretary Problem: An Algorithm for Deciding Who to Marry, and Other Tough Decisions. http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/technology/2014/12/the_secretary_problem_use_this_algorithm_to_determine_exactly_how_many_people.html. December 17, 2014.

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