While the latest trend in online dating has been video with sites like WooMe and SpeedDate.com, Youniverse (pronounced "universe"), which launched Thursday morning, is all about pictures.
Instead of matching you up with people based on a fill-in-the-blanks personality quiz or a impromptu video chat, it attempts to appeal to the visual part of your brain by having you choose from a grid of thumbnails. Each thumbnail determines a various aspect of who you are and what you like and dislike. It's actually kind of fun, and when you've done it will take all that information and stack it together into a ready-made profile.
When it comes time to discover people who match up, the site has a built-in tool that will let you see the best compatibility based on how they answered the same questions, as well as sliders that let you hone down the results by age, gender, and location. You can then dig a little deeper by visiting those people's profiles, sending them personal messages, or exploring the people who they're compatible with.
To help promote yourself, the site has a widget that can be put on your blog or social-networking profile (embedded after the break). I'm assuming most people wouldn't want to do this, because it showcases some of your more private personality preferences.
Another Web service that's experimented with the idea of using photos instead of text is Vidoop which lets you sign into secure sites or fill out human-checking security questions with pictures instead of words. We checked it out back in April of last year.
… Read more