In a recent interview on U.S. newsmagazine program 60 Minutes, George Church, a renowned Harvard University geneticist, discussed his co-founding of dating app, digi D8, whose motto is: science is your wingman. The app, which is not yet live, will incorporate advanced technologies such as homomorphic encryption and blockchain to protect personal privacy while purportedly appraising the genetic compatibility of prospective partners.
On a practical level, the app exposes users only to potential dating partners with whom they are genetically compatible, meaning that a union between them will have only a negligible chance of resulting in a child with one of hundreds of known severe genetically inherited diseases.
Notably, the app will not block people with dominant gene alleles, in other words, those people who have a 50% chance of passing on a disease to their children, regardless of the mate. The app is still in development, but according to its announced criteria, over 95% of the population will still be found compatible with each other.
Among other things, Professor Church, who in the same interview apologized for taking funding from accused sex predator and financier Jeffrey Epstein, suggested that a trillion dollars a year could be saved in health care costs just by decreasing genetic diseases within society.
This is not a new concept—a similar idea was floated over five years ago in the fictional feature film The Perfect 46. The film, directed by Brett Ryan Bonowicz, prided itself on its scientific accuracy. Like digi D8, claims of eugenics were similarly hurled at the film’s protagonist, Jesse Darden. Like Darden,