Datamatch: Flyby’s Shot at Love, Part 4

By Hyemi Park

The week after Datamatch results came out, I was late to our Flyby writers’ meeting (unsurprising). When I walked in, a Flyby writer asked, “Chris, you’re going to ask out your Datamatches, right?” To which I responded, “Yeah, of course.” Fast forward a few days, and I’ve sent out an extremely awkward email from my Crimson email address (because who wouldn’t put up with me for journalism?) reminding my top match that she was “numerically likely to enjoy” a conversation with me. In our fourth date in Flyby’s Datamatch series, I met my Datamatch this past Wednesday at Cafe Pamplona at 1:30 p.m. (I have a 2:00 class, so I can’t come across as too much of an idiot). Like a weirdo (click on that link, I promise that it’s worth it), I ordered iced coffee in the middle of February. Thus began a conversation between two top Datamatches.

Safe to say, I doubt that an algorithm exists. Don’t get me wrong, I actually really enjoyed our conversation. My Datamatch was a really fun person to talk to and a pleasant young lady (that’s the most elderly thing I’ve ever said). But we had nothing in common– at least not in the traditional college-conversation sense of the word. I concentrate in English; she concentrates in CS. I write sarcastic articles for an (awesome) blog and PAF; she does mock trial. We don’t hang out with the same group of people. We’ve never taken a class together.

We caught our staff writer Chris out on his Datamatch date and decided to snap a pic. You're welcome, Chris.
We caught our staff writer Chris out on his Datamatch date and decided to snap a pic. You're welcome, Chris. By Lauren G. Volpert

But, like I said, we actually had an enjoyable conversation. So there are two possible theories to explain this:

1) Datamatch is actually a perfected form of A&I and once we sign up for Datamatch, our computer starts to learn about us and matches us up based on information that we don’t even know that it knows. 2) Datamatch pairs people randomly (or based on cursory information like year, concentration, etc.) and expects adult human beings to, you know, be able to talk to each other. I know it’s wild to think of Harvard students as socially viable individuals (and, for anyone who knows me/has ever read one of my articles, even harder still to think of me that way), but maybe Datamatch is just hedging their bets and assuming that two people who sit down together will find something to talk about.

So, Harvard College female who had coffee with me, I hope you didn’t hate our conversation (hahah, how much of an idiot would I be if I wrote an article basically saying, “Yeah, two people can just sit down and get along” while my Datamatch just sits there thinking, “Wow, that kid was a weenie.”). So if you’re worried about reaching out to your Datamatches, just do it. Go grab a meal in a dining hall or something (#freewaffles are over unfortunately) and see if you get along. Even if you don’t have anything in common, you’ll probably enjoy it (@MyOtherDatamatches: hear that?).

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