For Nerds: The Odds of Finding the One

For Nerds: The Odds of Finding the One

Even a billionaire who is a CEO of two companies (Tesla & SpaceX) and works 80–100 hours a week had this to say about love:

NB: The estimations that I do here are just done to give insight on finding a soulmate. I use myself as an example in the calculations that I do.

We all know that there are at least 7 billion people in the world, but most people like to date someone who is closer to their geographical location. So now we need to pick a place. I will pick Johannesburg, South Africa, since I live there. So now the question is: what are the odds of finding someone truly meant for you A.K.A a soulmate, in Johannesburg?

Well, first of all, how many people are there in Johannesburg currently? There are currently about 5,926,668 people in Johannesburg. Since I am 27 years old, I have to determine how many females are there between the ages 20–29. For this calculation I use the latest population pyramid that I could find of the whole of South Africa and assume that:

  • It’s the same distribution for Johannesburg.
  • The 2020 population pyramid hasn’t changed much for the age range 20 -29 in 2021.

As we can see, there are about 4.1% females aged 20–24 and 4.4% females aged 25–29. What this could infer based on my assumptions is that there are about 503,767 females aged 20-29.

The question here now is: how many of them would I find attractive? Well, in percentage, I would probably find 40% of the females aged 20-29 attractive, but the number might be lower. Actually, OkCupid an online dating site, showed profile pictures of women who were members to “men looking for women” members, and the other way around (pictures of men users to “women looking for men” ones) and had them rate pode verificar aqui them on a seven-point scale from least attractive to most attractive. These are the results:

If we take the middle bar to be “average” and the bars to the right to be varying degrees of “above average” then men find approximately 40% of women to be ‘above average’ and approximately 40% of women to be ‘below average.’

I know these are group stats, but I’ll still assume that I find 40% of the women attractive. That would then leave me with 201,507 females who are potential mates.

In general, I think that dating apps are no silver bullet when it comes to finding true love or dates that lead to relationships

Now another question to ask is: how many of them are happily married, happy in relationships, would not be interested in me romantically or would be into another man? Well, there are simply too many factors to account for. Women finding me attractive could have something to do with my facial symmetry, jawline, personality, athleticism, salary/earning potential, age difference, height, body mass index B.M.I, being single/taken, being “in their league,” my frailties, etc. It all depends on the woman. OkCupid also conducted the same study for “women looking for men” members. Here are the results:

As we can see, women find approximately 7% of men to be “above average” and approximately 81% of men to be “below average” in terms of attractiveness.

One of my favorite quotes about love is the following quote from one of the greatest theoretical physicists of all time:

This applies to both men and women. I am going to be a bit optimistic and assume that 7/10 of the women are married, taken or could just be unable to date me for a few or numerous reasons. So, I’m assuming that 30% of the women that I meet are available to me, that leaves me with 141,054 attractive females.

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