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He just wants someone who wants what he does; to walk an indefinite, indeterminate distance well beyond the comfort and expectations of everyone else.[A computer monitor displays the profile of a man named Randall on an online dating site.As you can see, the comic mentions some analysis involving census bureau data and dating pools.Our goal in this post is to replicate the analysis that leads to these curves.When computed, the interval can be found to be equal to $\fracage - 14$.Therefore, what I would call "the dating pool paradox" results from two factors that have inverse effects on the dating pool: Figures such as the ones said to exist in the comic can indeed be found on the interwebz: It is likely that many people who list this in their profiles have never, in fact, taken a walk on a beach or may not live near enough to a beach for it to be a viable suggestion for a date.In this comic, Randall lists "long walks on the beach" as an interest on a dating profile.
As an example, there are 7993 thousand singles of both sexes between the ages of 18 and 19.
Feel free to comment if you spot some inaccuracies or have some remarks.
This post was entirely written using the IPython notebook. You can see a static view or download this notebook with the help of nbviewer at 20150131_XKCDDating Pools.ipynb.
Downloading the excel file at A1-all.xls, we can continue the analysis and replicate Randall's findings.
I edited the data found in the csv file to compute the age pools of singles by considering that the "single person" category is the union of the categories "Married Spouse Absent", "Widowed", "Divorced", "Separated" and "Never Married".