the future

Never Accidentally Flirt With a Loser Again


A new facial-recognition app for Google Glass makes it easier to coldly weed out undesirable mates as you cruise the bar. Inasmuch as you can determine someone’s value by checking him out on social media, online dating sites, and sex-offender registries, anyway.

Though it does not have the approval of Google, NameTag allows beta testers to pull up another person’s LinkedIn profile or Twitter feed with a glance, merging online and IRL dating in real time. “I believe that this will make online dating and offline social interactions much safer and give us a far better understanding of the people around us,” NameTag creator Kevin Alan Tussy says. (Update: Google asked us to point out that it has asked developers not to use Glass for facial recognition and will not approve apps that do. They are being developed by other companies under the assumption facial recognition will eventually be approved, if not by Google than by competing computerized glasses.)

For now, the best description of the future of augmented-reality dating might be fictional: Gary Shteyngart’s near-futuristic 2010 novel, Super Sad True Love Story. It described urban daters sizing up each other’s personality, sustainability, and “fuckability” ratings on pendant smartphones, or äppäräti — and feeling super anxious about it. I would only add that, in real life, a large social-media following (or a high Klout score) seems correlated with being a terrible boyfriend.

Never Accidentally Flirt With a Loser Again