Not exactly. Contrary to public perception, gay men earn less on average than straight men. But they are more likely to vote with their wallets, and technology firms have often led the way in their support for gay rights. In 1993, Apple flexed its muscle in Texas to preserve the domestic-partner benefits for its employees. Ten years later, gay men were twice as likely as straight men to own the company's computers. But Josh Rubin, founder of the Cool Hunting website, posits yet another theory. "Out gay men are familiar with taking risks," he says. "Trying a new phone is pretty easy compared to coming out of the closet."
Not long ago, it was enough to dream of technology that could help a man take that brave first step. Today the goal is to free him from the tyranny of the computer terminal. Wi-Fi-enhanced sex toys may let you stimulate partners thousands of miles away, but you can't as of yet e-mail pheromones, which makes the guy in the lunchroom far more appealing than the hottie halfway around the globe. "In the firm I was working in, I couldn't figure out who might be gay," says Antonio, a twentysomething grad student at the University of Arizona. "So I'd turn Grindr on to see if I could find myself another homo in the building." Alas, the pickings were slim. "In Tucson," says Antonio, "it starts loading people in Phoenix." Give it a few months—there aren't a lot of dance partners when you're early to the party.