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This Tinder robot helps you find love by feeling your sweaty hands

This Tinder robot helps you find love by feeling your sweaty hands


Because you've made some terrible decisions lately

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Tinder is a good way of automating dating, but it still requires a little too much thinking. Far better to remove any conscious decision making from the process and let your gut tell you who to spend the rest of your life with. Or, failing that, you could trust your sweaty hands instead. That's the idea behind the True Love Tinder Robot, which reads changes in users' galvanic skin response (in short, how electrically conductive their skin is, which can change due to sweat) and swipes left or right based on this input. The robot is the creation of Nicole He, a graduate student at NYU's Interactive Telecommunications Program who promises the bot will "find you love, guaranteed."

"Determine if this person has any value."

He says the idea for the True Love Tinder Robot came to her while she was sleeping, with the bot constructed from an Arduino mini computer, some servos to control the hand, a bit of code, and a "bunch of wires, a box, and a speaker." The bot's calming robot voice was inspired by GLaDOS from the Portal video game series, and offers advice and instructions like "judge this person," and "determine if this person has any value." On her blog He writes: "The lines I wrote for the robot were an attempt to give a similar sense of character, even for a short interaction."

Of course, galvanic skin response is a notoriously imprecise measurement of, well, anything. It's used by Scientologists for spiritual auditing and by law enforcement as part of lie detector tests, but what it's measuring is a very broad reaction that isn't necessarily tied to specific emotions or thoughts. (Although plenty of companies dress it up as something scientific in order to sell things.) He obviously knows this, and in a brief Q&A on her site responds to the question "is this scientific?" with the answer: "Definitely, absolutely, 100% no doubt." And, if you're looking for an approach to Tinder that's a bit more methodical, well, you can always try that robot that swipes right on everything using a piece of meat:

(Image credit: Tender / Marcello Gómez Maureira)