So, what this means is that there are 10,510 people in the UK that satisfy these most basic criteria for being my girlfriend. That is 0.00017% of the UK and 0.0014% of Londoners, which doesn’t seem so bad. On a given night in London, there is greater than a 1 in 1000 chance that I will meet an attractive woman between the ages of 24 and 34 with a university degree. Of course this does not take into account the fraction of these women that will find me attractive (depressingly low), the fraction of these women who will be single (falling with age) and, perhaps most importantly, the fraction of these women who I will get along with. Including such factors would greatly reduce the above figure of 10,510. A rough estimate puts the number of potential girlfriends accounting for these three additional criteria (1 in 20 of the women find me attractive, half are single and I get along with 1 in 10) at 26. That’s correct. There are 26 women in London with whom I might have a wonderful relationship. So, on a given night out in London there is a 0.0000034% chance of meeting one of these special people, about 100 times better than finding an alien civilization we can communicate with. That’s a 1 in 285,000 chance. Not great.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
What Are the Chances?
A bloke in the UK modifies the Drake equation (used to calculate the likelihood of our contacting an alien civilization) to calculate the likelihood of his finding a girlfriend in London. His final conclusion: