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Are you gonna eat that pickle? Can I have it?
July 25, 2007 1:37 PM   Subscribe

Picnicmob would like to invite you to a picnic and seat you precisely with those most like you.
posted by sudama (46 comments total)

 
"a flash mob for picnics" Hey, fuck you.
posted by boo_radley at 1:48 PM on July 25, 2007 [5 favorites]


This shit is infuriating. You can figure what kind of pigeon hole they want to stuff you into based on the available answers. Hey guess what..I have Vivaldi, Fugazi, Aguilera AND The Beatles on my iPod. That being said, I answered the whole damn thing.
posted by spicynuts at 1:49 PM on July 25, 2007


Yeah, that was annoying, I chose the quail on the food question even though I'm a vegetarian because I figured if I picked the cookie dough I'd end up at the mom picnic.
posted by Esoquo at 1:51 PM on July 25, 2007


I figured if I picked the cookie dough I'd end up at the mom picnic

It'd be interesting to pit these answers against a control group who weren't presented the seating-position-at-picnic premise.
posted by cortex at 1:59 PM on July 25, 2007 [3 favorites]


I answered all the questions, but then declined to give it my email. I'm really not in the flash mob target audience (if one exists anymore).
posted by Horace Rumpole at 1:59 PM on July 25, 2007


No Atlanta what a waste of time

Why only 5 US cities?
posted by Rubbstone at 2:01 PM on July 25, 2007


Where are they going to seat the "get off my fucking lawn" folks?
posted by ericb at 2:01 PM on July 25, 2007


A flash mob for picnics

Is there a group for people who are debating the merits of reading past that line? Oh what the hell...

Which academic field is most interesting?

Literature
Biology
Computer Science
History
Art


Well, books are more interesting than computers, but as an academic field literature is a cesspit overrun by people who care more about needlessly recondite literary theory than books. So computer science. But what if the intent of the question was "Do you like to read or draw or play with computers or what?". Cause then the answer's different. God damnit Picnicmob, god damn it and god damn you.

What would be the best place to live?

"a mobile fort, bristling with large bore cannons" is not one of the options. Nor is "a shack in the woods". So, "A cottage on the beach" then? God damn you, picnicmob.

Best song of the decade so far?

Where's "Chris Michaels" by the Fiery Furnaces? God damn you, picnicmob.

13. Which of these would you most like to be doing?

Hotdogongrillography


Colin Hunt, picnicmob, pure Colin Hunt. Oh, and god damn you.

All right, random answers for the rest. And-

Note - picnicmob.org currently supports Boston, New York City, Washington DC, Chicago, and the San Francisco Area.
You can only submit your answers for one of those areas at this time.


I have got to learn to read all the rules before I answer 30 questions.

God damn you, picnicmob.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 2:02 PM on July 25, 2007 [3 favorites]


My goal is to leverage Web 2.0 technology, and the vast sweep of incredible technological infrastructure beneath it; the globe sweeping reach of the internet; the power of Machine Learning and Clustering algorithms standing on the shoulders of centuries of Statistics and Mathematics - to use all the wonders of the modern age: cars, cellphones, public parks, TJs, insect repellant and modern packageing - to achieve the Ultimate Human Dream.

To converse solely with strangers indistinguishable from myself.
posted by freebird at 2:03 PM on July 25, 2007 [3 favorites]


Where are they going to seat the "get off my fucking lawn" folks?
I'll let you know when I get my seating chart email.
posted by goml at 2:05 PM on July 25, 2007


No matter what your choices are, even if you choose randomly, you'll still end up sitting next to someone like you - namely, people who fill out online forms and then attend something ridiculously named "picnicmob." Yes, you'll have a lot to talk about...
posted by vacapinta at 2:10 PM on July 25, 2007 [6 favorites]


I really, really, really dislike it when a group goes all out to get a site like this together and never once asks any literate member of their own social group to FREAKING PROOFREAD THE FRICKING SITE BEFORE RELEASING IT TO THE PUBLIC.

Sorry.

It just gets to me, you know? It's so easy. "Hey, could you folks make sure I'm not stinking things up with my shamefully incomplete Hooked on Phonics education?"

Agh.

I am always tempted to start a site proofreading business:

"Stand out from the crowd! Pretend like you know how to spell AND implement darling little Web 2.0 ideas!"
posted by batmonkey at 2:13 PM on July 25, 2007


I'm going to do it again and pick the answers I think people who annoy me would pick.

Then when they tell me where my picnicmob is mobbing, well.

Bring the rain.
posted by Esoquo at 2:13 PM on July 25, 2007 [2 favorites]


I think this is trying to determine which of the author's friends you are, rather than "what kind of person are you".
posted by aubilenon at 2:15 PM on July 25, 2007


Stuff like this almost makes me glad that I live in a city that's twenty years behind the times.
posted by octothorpe at 2:17 PM on July 25, 2007


To converse solely with strangers indistinguishable from myself.

Can you think of a better use for the single best mass-disintermediation tool that mankind has yet developed? I know I sure can't!
posted by lodurr at 2:22 PM on July 25, 2007


And -- watch -- when you arrive at the picnic you'll discover that it's set-up, trying to sell you a timeshare in Florida!!!
posted by ericb at 2:23 PM on July 25, 2007


The execution could be better, but I like the idea. A lot of us don't have easy opportunities to meet random strangers we might enjoy spending some time with. If this were a better done, I could see it gaining a lot of fans.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 2:26 PM on July 25, 2007


Harmon Leon needs to get on this pronto!
posted by Smart Dalek at 2:35 PM on July 25, 2007


Shitty picnic. It's like I'm having my poorly conceived demographic itself marketed to me and I don't even get a pink Tab Energy Drink out of it.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 2:35 PM on July 25, 2007


I too answered the whole damn thing, even though I should have stopped when I realized I didn't recognize any of the best songs of the decade. For some reason I was hoping for the little paragraph at the end which would define me, which I've come to expect from things like this. I suppose that in itself defines me well enough.
posted by frobozz at 2:39 PM on July 25, 2007


I answered all the questions and it told me I was Ralph Malph from Happy Days.
posted by turaho at 2:42 PM on July 25, 2007 [1 favorite]


That's better than my results: it told me my spirit animal was the otter. :|
posted by boo_radley at 2:43 PM on July 25, 2007


There was at least one question I wanted to answer *all*, and at least one I wanted to answer *none*. So I guess it's just as well (for me) that they don't do Atlanta.
Though I kinda wish I'd read that before doing the whole stupid thing.
posted by solotoro at 2:44 PM on July 25, 2007


Wow, did you know they throw the data into a supercomputer?

That's AWESOME! I mean, THE POWER! This is going to be a picnic TO THE MAX!

your favorite marketing hyperbole sucks
posted by davejay at 2:54 PM on July 25, 2007


My Ghod, the LAST people I would want to sit with are people like me. Is there a cheat sheet somewhere? I want to say whatever it takes to get seated with the teenage hotties. But I'd sit in the stray-animals-with-fleas section sooner than with a bunch of people just like me.

I've decided I will answer the questionnaire in return for free beer. But they'll have to provide the beer up front, and quite a lot of it.
posted by jfuller at 3:09 PM on July 25, 2007


All you really need is "do you like free beer?" and "do you want to go to a picnic and get some?" -- everyone who answers yes-yes is worth hanging out with, and the rest can stay home and whittle.
posted by davejay at 3:22 PM on July 25, 2007


My first thought upon seeing the premise was, "This assumes that humanity is a continuum, so that each person's left and right neighbors can be chosen with less than epsilon amount of difference, personality-wise." But no, the assumption is that humanity can be bucketed. Bleargh.
posted by A dead Quaker at 3:27 PM on July 25, 2007


Esoquo: you could organize a counter-mob. You know, the kind that carries pitchforks, not PDAs.
posted by invitapriore at 3:30 PM on July 25, 2007


Well, books are more interesting than computers, but as an academic field literature is a cesspit overrun by people who care more about needlessly recondite literary theory than books. So computer science. But what if the intent of the question was "Do you like to read or draw or play with computers or what?". Cause then the answer's different. God damnit Picnicmob, god damn it and god damn you.

I think we all know who gets to sit next to the beans...
posted by juv3nal at 3:43 PM on July 25, 2007


We're sorry, but something went wrong.

That's OK -- I couldn't have gotten to SF in time for a flash anything...
posted by Ogre Lawless at 3:48 PM on July 25, 2007


I bailed out and started reading about Thimphu.
posted by Wolfdog at 3:56 PM on July 25, 2007


I wonder which of my answers will clue them in to the fact that I won't actually show up...
posted by felix betachat at 3:58 PM on July 25, 2007


Yeah...but is the food free?
posted by The Light Fantastic at 5:05 PM on July 25, 2007


First question: If you choose "Jesus", does that mean they'd seat you with the religious folks? But what if you just wanted to go see Jesus to see if he existed/see if he really did those miracles/another "skeptic" reason?

T-Rex would be cool. I suspect that would be the "family" section, because kids like dinosaurs, though.

4. What's your opinion of music at a picnic?
Well, that depends. Is it good music? I picked "bring your instruments" because I like live music, even though I don't play.

That eBay one makes me kind of paranoid. What's that about?

14. My computer runs...
...My option isn't on there. :(

15. My last cup of coffee came from...
What about those dispenser machines?

17. When you have an afternoon to kill and can't think of anything sensible to do, what happens?
NINJAS ATTACK no wait. It's an online quiz, and they don't have "fuck around online" as an option? Sheesh.

21. Why is it warmer in the summer?
The distance to the sun changes

D: And why don't they have a precise right answer to that one?
posted by Many bubbles at 5:16 PM on July 25, 2007


Well - I'm glad all you negative nancys won't be at the picnic. I'm a musician, an they seem to group musicians together. sounds like fun. pppfffthwww!
posted by Baby_Balrog at 5:22 PM on July 25, 2007


It'd be interesting to pit these answers against a control group who weren't presented the seating-position-at-picnic premise.

I think the "control group" should be the same people. First, you give the survey without saying what it's for, then you tell them and have them retake it.

My first thought upon seeing the premise was, "This assumes that humanity is a continuum, so that each person's left and right neighbors can be chosen with less than epsilon amount of difference, personality-wise."

...I read that and immediately thought of two ways to do that--one using cartesian coordinates to map two traits, and one using polar coordinates to map one trait/interest/whatever (one where you can't easily pick two endpoints--or if you can, the endpoints can be bent around to be next to each other, like a color wheel) and its strength. There's a "political leanings" quiz floating around that maps your answers the first way, although I forget what the axes were. (I think one was "permissiveness" or something.)
posted by Many bubbles at 5:42 PM on July 25, 2007


I mean, obviously you'd have to deform the resulting map to create a more uniform density, but it could totally work.
posted by Many bubbles at 5:43 PM on July 25, 2007


God, I hate it when some people try to get other people to interact with each other! Especially people that might have something in common. It's so infuriating! And picnics! God damn it, who likes picnics? Food and drinks and entertainment and socializing and being outside. Where the nature is? Fuck that. I must register my dissatisfaction AT ONCE.
posted by LeeJay at 5:43 PM on July 25, 2007


I think we all know who gets to sit next to the beans...

I LOVE BEANS!
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 6:11 PM on July 25, 2007


I think the "control group" should be the same people.

It's not exactly a control group at that point.
posted by cortex at 6:21 PM on July 25, 2007


Welllll, maybe not. But I think it might give a slightly better picture of how the context changes people's answers (especially if you tied the two together in some way so that they were a step below completely anonymous). Sort of a "before and after" thing. You could see which questions in particular tended to change, and how.

I'm sort of assuming that already having taken the test wouldn't affect people's answers, though--that being told what it was for is all that would do that.

Maybe have three groups, both taking it twice: one that isn't given the context either time, one that's given the context after the first time, and one that's given the context before taking it at all (so they have time to rethink things).

I wonder if there would be any tendancy for people to just try to keep their answers consistent if they knew the two sets of answers they gave would be linked together (though not linked to them specifically).

I wonder if someone could get a grant to do this.
posted by Many bubbles at 7:36 PM on July 25, 2007


Wow, lotsa hostility here, you guys should cut down on the caffeine, eh?

Point is that it might get a lot of people out for a huge picnic -- who cares how accurate the questions are?

If you have enough questions, you'll probably ended up seated with people something like you, even if the answers were foolish. But it's *a good excuse for a picnic*.

I put my email address in, anyway.
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 8:49 PM on July 25, 2007


We're probably all just bitter that it's not in our area.

Or something like that.
posted by batmonkey at 9:59 PM on July 25, 2007


If only we lived in a 30-D universe, then I could enjoy my potato salad without VIVALDI-LISTENING JERKS LIKE YOU SITTING NEXT TOME.
posted by jewzilla at 11:28 PM on July 25, 2007



I think the "control group" should be the same people.

It's not exactly a control group at that point.


There are study designs in which people serve as their own controls, actually.
posted by Maias at 2:47 PM on July 26, 2007


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