The Great Computer Dating Caper

Computer Dating Caper cover

The Great Computer Dating Caper

Eddie and Jody need to get some cash together so Eddie’s dad can pursue development of his invention. So the boys create a dating service that is geared to the fat, lonely and shy girls. (Jody calls them “dogs”.) The boys themselves are the dates and Eddie starts to think maybe they are taking advantage of some of the girls. They actually are nice and sweet and somewhat vulnerable. One of the dads gets wind of this “service” and busts it publicly as a “teen sex ring”. But it’s all good in the end, since they get enough money together and the girls actually DID get dates as promised. (I guess we can just overlook that “dating a dog” concept.)


Computer Dating Caper inside flap

Computer Dating Caper back cover

Computer Dating Caper exerpt


    1. I was thinking she’s one of those horrible fat girls (sarcasm!) and is trying to cover up. Though I’ve never heard of using a trench coat to do it.

  1. This has to be one of the weirdest ones yet! “Cisco” has had “numerous get-rich-quick schemes backfire on him,” but for some reason, this one is going to work, so his teenage son and friend start a dating business to fund it? What are mom and Cisco doing while this is happening? How could anyone date 100 high school girls at once? Why bring the Big Three automakers and a patent lawsuit into this teen novel?

    I’d love to see some of the text.

  2. You know, in a freaky kind of way, this book was way ahead of its time. Very, very few people would have had access to computers on a regular basis in 1984, so the idea of a computer dating service having any success at that time is kind of puzzling.

    1. Computer dating actually started back in the 1960s. A couple of Harvard students made over $250,000 on rented computers! There were long questionnaires, and the answers were then transferred to punch-cards. It cost $3 to participate.
      As for how many people would have had computers in 1984, my son now in his early 30s did. He “grew up” to be a computer scientist!

      1. I forgot to mention, I find this to be quite an “awful” book. I don’t think the trench coat girl is fat, I think she is flashing the boys to get their attention. The illustration already has “fat,” and “band geek.” Although a flasher is a strange one…

      2. If your son is now in his early 30s, he must had been 3 or 4 years old in 1984. What kind of computer had he? Leap Frog? Commodore 64?
        Are you sure it was not in the 90s instead of the 80s? Just wondering.

        1. Tandy Color Computer, from Radio Shack. They had program packs, and a few years later he got a disk drive for it. There was even an entire magazine for it, The Rainbow. I know how old my son is, and when he got his first computer!

          1. Ha, my family had a TRS-80 color computer in the early 80’s too! You could buy books of programs in BASIC and spend three or four days typing some game in and then save it to a cassette tape, or you could buy cartridges (Quasar Commander! Mega Bug!)

            Like your son, I grew up to be a programmer.

        2. The IBM PC came out in the early 80’s — I remember the one in our department. It had two floppy drives. Our director was thrilled with it but I don’t think any of the rest of us “got it.” But in my next job, in 1984, I had my own, and it had a hard disk as well as a floppy drive! It was pretty professional.

  3. Oh dear, he’s into computers and dating a girl named Hacker, while his father, whose inventions always seem to backfire, is working on a car engine. Davila is the bad guy. How many other groaners are in this book?

  4. I’m hoping trench coat girl is revealing herself to be a police officer about to arrest the boys for exploitation, fraud, unpaid taxes etc. relating to their clearly unregistered business.

    1. I doubt it. The police seem to be about 5 to 10 years behind the times WRT technology. Back when this was written, they probably didn’t have much more than a touch tone phone.

  5. It all sounds cutesy enough until the exposure as “sex-for-profit ring.” Gee that got dark and sinister fast. And to highlight that plot development in the back cover synopsis?

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