As technology flourishes, we continue to be introduced to new ways of finding new partners. Currently people are dabbling with video, virtual world activities, and the old fashioned hunt and peck through photos and profiles on the typical dating website. There are a host of websites that claim they have a very scientific approach to finding you a match, but do they really? According to most researchers who live and breathe the science of recognition matching, that answer is no.
There are four highly accurate methods of deciphering ones personality tendencies, and there is not one single dating website in the world that uses these to their favor. What would make this sort of matching ideal? The typical dating website questionnaire relies heavily on a person to be honest with themselves to get an accurate reading. Most people have an image of who they are, which is usually quite skewed from reality.
According to the Scientific American, more than 90 percent of all dating profiles contain lies. If you combine this reality with the ‘scientific-based’ matching systems available today, the end result is a group of choices which are no better than if a person were to sort through profiles on their own, using nothing but photos and hobbies. But it shouldn’t have to be this way. Not when there are four very reliable means of identifying a good match, which includes handwriting recognition, facial similarity, pheromone compatibility, and Personality profiling. Lets look at each of these in detail.
Handwriting Recognition (match component based on similarity of handwriting)
Long have we wondered if our personality was actually written into our handwriting, and according to graphologists (those who study this) there does indeed appear to be something to it. Handwriting is such a distinct trait, it is as individual as our own fingerprints. Beyond this, is a sort of script of certain writing tendencies, that seem to follow certain individuals.
For instance, those whose use relatively close together letters in a sentence, are said to be people-person’s who crave socializing and the limelight. A larger gap denotes a person who prefers minimal company. Peoples whose sentences ascend upwards (on paper without lines) have a more positive outlook on life, than those whose sentences slope downward. Wavering lines, represent someone who is possibly emotionally unstable.
The direction that your individual letters slant, also denotes certain personality types. Letters that slant to the left, represent people who are withdrawn and have difficulties expressing themselves. Letters that slant to the right, represent a caring and empathetic person. A signature can say a lot about a person too, such as the more illegible it is, the more insecure they are in public situations. This can be seen in the gradual change in president Richard Nixon’s handwriting over the course of his career in politics.
We could go on and on, and as interesting as this research is, many psychologists believe handwriting represents a reasonably accurate way of picking out certain traits. All that is needed to incorporate this advanced practice in matchmaking, is one paragraph of written text. This text would then be analyzed and narrowed down into subcategories, focusing on matching members using complimenting personalities, social needs, and means of expressing themselves.
Facial Similarity Recognition (similar facial features)
While facial attraction is perceived as something you either have or don’t have, research from Durham University has shown that we also make certain perceptions based on facial features. For instance, masculine men featuring an overly square jawline, large nose, and small eyes, are more likely to be perceived as unfaithful, than men with feminine characteristics. Research from the University of St. Andrews have taken this research further, stating women also prefer men who resemble their own facial features. Consider the Hollywood couples, Pete Wentz/Ashlee Simpson and Tome Cruise/Katie Holmes, as examples of this.
The idea behind this theory is that women cancel out any mistrust they normally associate with masculine characteristics, by the familiarity of their own femininity. Studies at St. Andrews show that women prefer men with similar characteristics almost across the board. An anthropologist from the Institute of Anthropology in Poland has concluded that women also appear to prefer men with similar characteristics as their father’s, which could be construed as correlating with both the theory of familiarity and like facial features.
How do these studies fit with helping online daters find a better match? Facial recognition programs are gaining in both popularity and technological advancement. In fact, today you can scan in a facial image, send it into a massive ancestral database of photos, and find your long lost relatives. This same technology could be used to pair match members of dating websites, identifying similar facial features, and rating them by a percentage of how much they either compliment or mismatch each other.
This would help members narrow down their choices, offering an organized list of people they will most likely find attractive, based on the laws of like-attraction.
VNO Pheromone Compatibility Indexing and Recognition/Matching
Pheromones control our behavior, regulate menstrual cycles, and are also responsible for attraction and sexual response. While you may think your pheromones (and DNA) are for the most part walled within your own personal space, In truth, these chemicals communicate with others around you every day through the air (breathing) and saliva (kissing).
Research has shown that women who are enclosed in tight living quarters (college dormitories/sororities) often menstruate at the same time. This is no coincidence, however, as most scientists believe this is caused by the individual pheromones of these girls mixing with each other, interacting, and then uniting them with a hodgepodge of hormonal instructions.
In addition to these findings, some research suggests that our bodies are genetically coded to search for like matches who are not only compatible personality wise, but also genetically. Proper genetic coding ensures offspring will be strong and hardy, and researchers believe the pituitary gland is responsible for the release of the hormones which dictate who we will and won’t like. Interestingly, kissing studies reveal the reason a “first kiss” is such a make or break moment, is the brain tests the genetic makeup of each person through their saliva, deciding if the person is a good match or not.
What makes a good match? Well, for starters, having differing immune system genes is desirable, considering it will offer offspring and your individual health the most protection from disease. The suggested means of using this matchmaking technology for dating websites, is to either send a t-shirt or article of clothing containing pheromones (sweat, skin dander, etc), or a DNA sample from a cotton swab rubbed on the inside of the mouth. Matches would then be narrowed down from a larger pool, giving members the confidence that at least the first kiss should initiate the sparks of romance.
16PF5 or Similar IPIP-NEO Tests for Personality Profiling
At last we come to one of the most commonly used means of finding a match, the personality test. Considering the time and cost required to do a thorough personality profile, the majority of these websites rely on “self referential” tests, which means we’re given the responsibility to describe what kind of person we are. Unfortunately, these types of tests are not very accurate (approximately 10 percent), as they require an individual to be absolutely honest with themselves, and we are one of our own worst enemies when it comes to lying.
To get around this, tests such as the 16PF5, are designed to get to an individuals personality type, by choosing the preferred action from a variety of scenarios. For instance, instead of asking if you enjoy socializing (a trait that many daters see as a positive), the 16PF5 will approach this personality trait by offering various outcomes to social situations, asking which is most preferable. In other words, it disguises the traits, so that the answers will be less persuaded by what you think you should answer.
The IPIP-NEO tests are also quite thorough, producing matches as minimal as three per 100,000. This is in comparison to the typical DISC and MBTI test (self-referential) which offers over 400 matches per 100,000. According to most psychological reports, the validity (predictability) of these tests, ranges from 0.85 to 0.95, which is why many companies require workers to take these tests before they are hired. Here are two examples of the types of questions you might run across on a 16PF5 test:
1. When I have to catch a plane, I feel hurried or anxious even though I have enough time.
2. If I had my life to live over again, I would:
a. Plan it differently
c. Live it as I have
The way these tests could be beneficial to dating websites, is to take the place of the standard DISC/MBTI “self-reference” tests. These could be taken in the privacy of ones home, generating a score which would classify each individual among a domain of personality traits, including extroversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism (anxiety, anger, etc), and openness to experience. Each member would then be ranked within a percentile, considering the amount of trust, commitment, and satisfaction they will experience with other members in the database.
As you can see, if a dating website actually incorporated all four of these matching methods, not only would it decrease the amount of exertion one would need to find a dating partner, it would also increase the odds of finding a successful relationship. In this day and age, people are actually hiring dating website professionals to scan through members on these websites, messaging them, driving conversations, and narrowing the choices to a manageable number. It would seem far easier if these websites would accommodated more precision into their own matching process.
The only downside, would be the amount of work required to analyze this much information, which would result in membership fees in the hundreds to even thousands. But then again, how much should a perfect mate be worth?