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In online dating, it’s all about likes, swipes, and sending the first message. At least that’s what we can discern from most examples of romance in Western culture.
In one widely-shared post, Rudder created word clouds based on how users describe themselves, indexed by race and gender. "You lose the detail, but you get to see something familiar in a totally new way." Armed with that sense of wonder and a sharp enthusiasm for the data he’s collected, Rudder tackles a range of subjects in three sections, each containing dozens of lovely two-toned graphs: What Brings Us Together (dating and sexual attraction), What Pulls Us Apart (social and political fractures), and What Makes Us Who We Are (how we self-identify). Rudder’s writing skirts politically charged topics, oftentimes connecting the data to his own personal experiences or paving the way for a block quote cribbed from a liberal arts syllabus.In 2010 Christian Rudder, one of the founders of OKCupid, started a blog to accompany his massively popular dating site.Called OKTrends, it was an under-the-hood look at the vast amounts of self-reported data he and his colleagues had access to as the administrators of a site where millions of people answered extensive questionnaires, filled out in-depth profiles, and messaged potential partners.“So that’s were all my creative energy has been focused for the last 15 months.” Rudder’s forthcoming book, , is due to its publisher, Crown Publishing, in December for a fall 2014 release.Described as “a witty, provocative, visually fascinating look at how ‘big data’ is transforming our understanding of race, politics, age, beauty, sex, humor, even history, and ushering in a new era in the study of human nature,” the book deal for was reportedly in the seven figures.
In the spring of 2011, Ok Trends — the content arm of dating site Ok Cupid — was one of the hottest blogs on the web.