OkCupid app sets singles up on 'Crazy Blind Dates'

A new mobile app from the popular online dating site lets users meet strangers at a favorite bar or coffee shop any night of the week.

OkCupid launched its Crazy Blind Date mobile app today. OkCupid

Think that going on a blind date is weird enough, how about one set up by a mathematical algorithm?

That's exactly what online dating site OkCupid is doing with the launch of its new app called "Crazy Blind Date." This app for both iPhone and Android uses mobile technology to set singles up in near real time.

"People will say that Crazy Blind Date is too crazy," OkCupid co-founder Sam Yagan said in a statement e-mailed to CNET. "But for a whole generation of young singles, it's going to be a great adventure, and a great complement to traditional online dating."

The app is geared toward matching people on blind dates with short notice. To get started, singles choose the nights of the week they want to go on dates and then pick a favorite bar, restaurant, or other locale. When the time for the date comes, the app will have searched its database to find someone compatible and sent a confirmation to both parties. The app then uses an anonymous IM window to let the daters find each other at the chosen location.

Using a ranking system, people can rate their dates after the fact. This system lets users buy Crazy Blind Date credits -- which are called "Kudos" and cost up to $3 -- that should theoretically get each person to be on their best behavior. The more Kudos people have, the better opportunity they'll have to get dates in the future.

Unlike other dating sites, OkCupid is known for using analytical algorithms to match up singles. According to the company, 1 million people login each day, do up to ten million searches, and send two million messages.

It's unclear how many people signed up for the Crazy Blind Date app today, but according to the Wall Street Journal, the system was initially hit with a bug. Apparently, those users willing to dig around the app were able to unearth the email addresses, birth dates, and photos of other users. According to the Journal, the company said it didn't see any evidence of people exploiting the glitch and that the security hole was fixed in the early afternoon.

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About the author

Dara Kerr is a staff writer for CNET focused on the sharing economy and tech culture. She grew up in Colorado where she developed an affinity for collecting fool's gold and spirit animals.

 

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