In the 1960s, mainframe computers were used to match people with potential partners using common likes, dislikes, personality types and looks.
These services were the forerunners of the online dating industry.
The three types of online dating sites are matchmaking sites where you fill out a profile and receive profiles from potential matches based on your criteria; event sites that set up singles events for members; and personals sites where you comb through profiles yourself.
There are social media sites and special-interest websites and forums where you can find someone who shares your particular interest.
Follow your instincts and do not give away too much personally identifying information too quickly.
According to Forrester Research Inc.
, online dating generated $957 million in revenue in 2008.