I think this is a great way to meet people- no need to bother with
having a conversation, just wait until your pager blinks, and you know
that the two of you have something in common.
I don't think this tool is sophisticated enough yet to be
useful. Without some sort of rudimentary age, sexual preference, or "drug
and disease free" switches, the only thing this tells you is that the
other person was also dumb enough to shell out $20 bucks in hopes of one
day getting a date.
Even with these drawbacks (plus the fact that they probably communicate
with a proprietary/closed protocol) there is definitely some good reasons
for having a broadcasting transmitter in your pocket.
Ed from Slashdot made some very good points in his post:
Sound like you've not spent much time in clubs
(whether Tokyo or elsewhere). Quiet conversation is impossible. Hell,
some places any conversation is impossible. Appearance and "style"
rule--they often are the only possible way to choose what new people to
meet. A more intelligent reason for going off to a corner and having a
(probably shouted) conversation with someone is a Good
"Intimacy without social interaction" is an oxymoron.
Social interaction needs an initiator, especially in large groups in
noisy environments. This device can provide that initiator. At that
point, as always, you're on your own.
Ed really strikes to the heart of the matter: starting a conversation
is difficult, and this is not only at clubs. Make a list of all the
people you would have liked to meet, converse with, or talk to. If you're
anything like me, people are added to that list every day.
These little pagers seem to provide a nice "hook" to meet people.
I'm currently single but even when I go to clubs or bars I always feel
uncomfortable "checking out" girls. Of course I appreciate beauty very
much, but it feels disrespectful to leer. Besides- I'm much more likely
impressed by an insightful comment than a curvacious body. However, as
Ed points out, conversation can be almost impossible. This puts guys
who are interested in more than a girl's body in a tough situation.
Once you do begin a conversation, it is sometimes difficult to find
common ground. Repeat these steps throughout the night, and it's easy
to get frustrated.
It's much easier to start conversations in the chatrooms where I hang out. Mostly
because the information on Yahoo's profile pages give you
something to talk about.
It's quite possible that my view is skewed- I admit that I'm a geek,
but well-balanced. I spend a lot of time using computers and the
internet, mostly because it's convenient. The idea of carrying over
convenience from the internet to real life is appealing. These Lovegety
pagers seem interesting because they're a first step towards
automatically introducing people. Starting a real conversation can be
expensive and frustrating, but reading a random person's
who catches your eye is at least as effective as telling someone that
you like their
If I had my way, these little gizmo's would collect everyone's homepage
address as you walked around, kindof like a little business card. Of
course, the protocol would be open so that people could hack their palm
pilots to be compatible. In addition, I'd set it up so that using the device was more
dynamic and interesting... make a website with "weekly questions", or
"pick the top three choices". Fill out the survey, plug in a "coded
response" to the device, and if two people answered the same, make it
There's a lot of potential for good (as well as potential for
abuse) but something like this could be the next step where technology
makes inroads into daily life.