In this article, we convert MSN’s research on relationship compatibility into an easy to use online love calculator. Let math predict how long your relationship will last!
The Love Calculator… or the Relationship Calculator… You Pick
This calculator is based on a fun article which appeared on MSN, written by Rachel Burge: “New ‘love formula’ reveals lover number five could be The One“. Ms. Burge presents the theoretical underpinnings of compatibility, and breaks down human monogamous tendencies to science (or at least surveys), by marrying big data to… marrying.
Call it “Big Love”, “Horoscopes meet Moneyball” or whatever you like – MSN has some interesting data on what matters most when it comes to relationship length. With a sample size of 2,000 people, it turns out that the most important factors in compatibility are:
- How long they knew each other first
- The number of previous partners for both
- How much they care about humor
- How much they care about physical attraction
- How much they care about sex
- How much they both care about in-laws(!)
- How much they care about children
For heterosexual couples, add to that list (both are positive):
- How much he cares about honesty
- How much she cares about money
Interesting stuff, no doubt – although the in-law one certainly wouldn’t have gotten many points in a love-formula episode of Family Feud.
For the record, the three negative bits are having many partners before starting the relationship (the article reveals that the sweet spot for a couple is around 5 partners each), having the male (or one partner for a homosexual relationship) value sex much more than the female (or the other partner), and the combined value both partners place on looks.
Converting the Love Formula to a Love Calculator
Ms. Burge playfully challenges the reader of the article to do the math for his or herself:
Warning: you might need a calculator and/or a mathematics degree for this part!
Still with us? In case you’re scratching your head, all ‘importance’ measures can be scaled from 1 to 5 where 1 is not important at all and 5 is very important.
And there we have it! Easy wasn’t it?
Mathematics Degree aside (we lack that particular degree), the bottom of the article contains formulas for both heterosexual and homosexual couples to guess at how long the survey data would predict their relationships to last. That’s more tempting to us at DQYDJ than any number of coy remarks about doing algebra once you’ve graduated from college… so, enjoy the calculator.
The Love Formula vs. Horoscope Compatibility!
In Personal Finance, when someone’s strategy disagrees with the data, the common retort is “Personal finance is PERSONAL“. While we tend to disagree with most uses of that excuse (although we can think of times when we’d allow it), we certainly allow that love life is way more personal than ‘Personal” finance could ever hope to be.
However, we appreciate MSN introducing empirical analysis into their dating columns, and are glad to have found this one. So, while we would never suggest solely relying on a computer to determine your dating decisions, it’s nice to be armed with the data – so bookmark this calculator and add it to your horoscope and name-compatibility checks (or whatever your personal ritual) for whenever your next relationship starts.
We’re not going to share the inputs to our marriage – but, suffice to say, we’re predicted to last quite a while. Here’s to hoping the math bears out. How did you do?