0173: "Movie Seating"

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Natalie
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Postby Natalie » Sat Oct 21, 2006 7:40 am UTC

xkcd wrote:I once spent, and I am not exaggerating at all here, eight hours googling to try to find a simple program that would let me make graphs like that, just point and click to add stuff, and let it arrange them to generally make it look nice. EIGHT HOURS. I still don't have one. I want to map my social networks too!

Unfortunately, I don't have a mac. But maybe someone here can recommend one?


Not quite point and click, but prefuse (Java) will let you load a file of format:

person1 person2
person2 person3
person1 person3

where each line is a connection. Check out the Small World demo for an applet that's just waiting to load the file.

If you take a look at the documentation, there's a lot of other stuff it can do as well. It does a bunch of other diagrams, but you can also change the algorithms used to arrange nodes, or adjust the physics and connection weights. I used it a couple of times (once in a paper using my Facebook friends as data and once after a particularly scandalous spring break trip), but it's been years ago, so I'm sure it's even cooler than I remember it being.

Also, for the sake of completeness, a list of information visualization software packages. I vaguely remember looking at graphviz at the same time I was looking at prefuse, but ended up going with the latter because I could just use the demos to do what I wanted.

And yeah -- this is one of my favorite comics so far. Not only do I love mapping social networks, but I frequently fume during the previews about the sub-optimal (usually for me) seating arrangements.

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Postby xkcd » Sat Oct 21, 2006 9:56 am UTC

Bluebottle wrote:Socially optimal? TBy that I presume you mean a maximised sum of utility. But that's only relevant if you're a third-person or a perfectly altruisitc participant who wants the 'group' to be as happy as possible. And since you're dealing with people here, that doesn't apply. What I want to know is, is thie arrangement Pareto efficient? Graph theory won't help you when the vertexes are selfish and disagree with each other about where the edges should be.


You've seen through me. When I complain that it's not socially optimal, I really mean that either a cursory glance has told me people aren't sitting together who should, or, more likely, I'm not sitting next to the person I want to. Almost entirely selfish.

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Dashiva
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Postby Dashiva » Sat Oct 21, 2006 11:58 am UTC

So how about solving the problem? It's pretty small sample set, so we can brute force the tricky parts. But first we have to dumb down the whole concept of association values.

Acquaintances - 1 point each side
Friends - 2 points each
Relationship - 3 points each
Crush - 4 points to crusher, 0 to crushee

We define an optimal solution as the one where the minimum points per person are highest, and where the total points are highest in the case of ties.

Of course, these numbers are completely arbitrary. Some might insist that being in a relationship makes you value friends less, for one. But each valuation gives us a solution, so handle those yourself.

Left relationship (3,5), crushee (2), crusher (4), left friend (2), right relationship (5,5), right friend (2). Min 2, total 28. The minimum is locked at 2 because the crusher needs his crush seating to avoid 1, and that forces the crushee into a max 2. The right friend is also at max 2 because of limited acquaintances.

Maybe you could add value for sitting on the end for people who have few acquaintances in the first place?
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mister k
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Postby mister k » Sat Oct 21, 2006 12:15 pm UTC

I'm more intrigued by speaking guys' evil cloak. Or something anyway....

Talking during films is wrong and shal be punished, but people should sill be seated for maximum enjoyment- for exaple, the people who insist on buying the incredibly rustly sweets should sit about a mile from everyone else.....

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athelas
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Postby athelas » Sat Oct 21, 2006 1:26 pm UTC

I'm curious as to how this comic was drawn. Was the bottom half color-inverted, or was it done on one of those "scratch away the ink" boards?

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Postby Shoofle » Sat Oct 21, 2006 2:10 pm UTC

Inverted, I am as sure as I can be.

DeathByOSI
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Postby DeathByOSI » Sat Oct 21, 2006 7:15 pm UTC

Dashiva wrote:So how about solving the problem? It's pretty small sample set, so we can brute force the tricky parts. But first we have to dumb down the whole concept of association values.

Acquaintances - 1 point each side
Friends - 2 points each
Relationship - 3 points each
Crush - 4 points to crusher, 0 to crushee

We define an optimal solution as the one where the minimum points per person are highest, and where the total points are highest in the case of ties.

Of course, these numbers are completely arbitrary. Some might insist that being in a relationship makes you value friends less, for one. But each valuation gives us a solution, so handle those yourself.

Left relationship (3,5), crushee (2), crusher (4), left friend (2), right relationship (5,5), right friend (2). Min 2, total 28. The minimum is locked at 2 because the crusher needs his crush seating to avoid 1, and that forces the crushee into a max 2. The right friend is also at max 2 because of limited acquaintances.

Maybe you could add value for sitting on the end for people who have few acquaintances in the first place?


I did something similar... please don't laugh at my code here this is just a first timer, I've never coded in the past, but it works.

http://pastebin.ca/213972

I didnt have it print out a pretty result, but that wouldnt be too hard, and currently the dictionary is set in the program itself, I'll make a new one that doesnt do that as my next learning project.

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Frankeinstein
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Postby Frankeinstein » Sun Oct 22, 2006 6:11 pm UTC

I refuse to post to this thread on the grounds that this is not the official "Movie seating" discussion.

Ooops.

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Postby Peshmerga » Sun Oct 22, 2006 6:31 pm UTC

athelas wrote:I'm curious as to how this comic was drawn. Was the bottom half color-inverted, or was it done on one of those "scratch away the ink" boards?


Or maybe he just drew with a white color on a black background D:
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Postby Verysillyman » Sun Oct 22, 2006 11:57 pm UTC

That's what i imagined too.

Apparently the batman animated series was drawn on a black background, and that's part of why it's so awesome.

I was going to go to a movie the other day, but we realised that the three of us going weren't interested in seeing any of the ovies out except 'brick'. Which we'd watched in the same group the last week. So we decided that it'd be stupid for the three of us to see it again together and played board games instead. Seating disputes: solved!

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Postby dragonfrog » Mon Oct 23, 2006 1:59 am UTC

Dashiva wrote:Maybe you could add value for sitting on the end for people who have few acquaintances in the first place?


I guess it depends on whether getting to know people is worth utility. I'd think the relatively unconnected ones would get more benefit from being placed next to someone who is in turn not sitting next to a significant other or crush{ee,er}. i.e., the person who doesn't know a lot of people would like to be seated next to someone likely to make conversation during the previews, so as to get to know someone new.

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Postby Teaspoon » Mon Oct 23, 2006 3:27 am UTC

Low-connection people should be sat next to unwilling crushees, because the unwilling crushee will be happy to strike up a conversation with an unknown to avoid awkward conversations with the crusher.

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Postby Pau! » Tue Oct 24, 2006 5:27 pm UTC

Appleswitch wrote:My topic was more along the lines of related, instead of direct discusion. I knew about the other two and thought my post would be better organised in Its own topic, sorry if the name was confusing. Anyways, back to our sceduled brodcasting?

Intruduction: I'm a newbie who got hooked and read everything, now the feed holds a special place in my heart :)

Anyway, I have to say "Moivie Seating" Is my favorite yet. The bottom picture is a network I drew up a few months back and the top one Is a network my friend had made, which he sent me after I told him about mine. :D

I guess Its just something all geeks have in common :P

Image
Image

P.S. I did mine in Omni Graffle :D




HOLY SHIT YOU'RE TRYING TO SAY I DIDN'T INVENT THIS I FEEL SO UNORIGINAL NOW :(

I feel odd even typing in a place with other people who construct Social Network graphs. Something very similar to this is what I named the Social Influence graph, which basically states that the more links you have connecting yourself to someone, the more influence your views have on them. It doesn't give exact values but ideas (Acquaintances get a half-link, friends a full link, and relationships a double link. If you are directly connected to someone -and- with all their friends, then you have a much better chance of getting your point of view across since you're sending it via multiple channels of influence. This also lets you see, often surprisingly accurately, who has/is influencing you.)

It sounds kinda evil, actually, but it's really not >.> Just a social study mechanism.

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Postby fjafjan » Wed Oct 25, 2006 10:37 pm UTC

Related to this topic sort of, does it not intruige anyone else in the order people walk, that really bothers me from time to time ...
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Postby patyeon » Sat Feb 10, 2007 4:49 am UTC

I realize it's been a long time since this topic has been more or less laid to rest, but I saw something I thought I should mention. To anyone who's thought out how they'd write a program to figure out the optimal seating arrangement, it may now help you get a job!
Facebook has programming puzzles that they like to see solved by applicants to engineering positions, and guess what one of those puzzles is? I thought it was neat when I saw it.
And just in case you were wondering, no, I do not have any relation to facebook, not even an account there of my own.

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Postby SpitValve » Sat Feb 10, 2007 8:01 pm UTC

they don't let you use fortran :(

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Andrew
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Postby Andrew » Sat Feb 10, 2007 9:46 pm UTC

SpitValve wrote:they don't let you use fortran :(

That's probably for your own good.

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Postby Aoeniac » Sun Feb 11, 2007 3:43 am UTC

When me and my group of friends go to a movie, it is the only time the crazy uncoordinated girl takes command and demands everybody sit the way she deems as socially optimal.

Usually works out okay.
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Postby Toeofdoom » Sun Feb 11, 2007 8:16 am UTC

Generally when I go to a movie with friends it all works okay because none of us have girlfriends. hehehe. Non-conformist nerds we are, funny like that eh? :P
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LE4dGOLEM
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Postby LE4dGOLEM » Sun Feb 11, 2007 6:06 pm UTC

Having not read the thread, here is my answer/system:

One-way lust can be ignored for convenince, and SO rules take priority over everything else. The one who payed the most gets to sit closest to the exact centre of the cinema (in the one that I go to, in row G (7th from the front) there is a large amount of legroom followed by a solid block which sepearates the 'tiered' system from the 'front row' all flat system, thus, the middle of Row G is the best seat in the place and that is where the prime payer would sit). Thereafter decide seating arrangements by marching order through the aisles (thus encouraging pushing at the (wider-than-aisles) doorway. Gallantry (ie holding door open for everyone) earns a place nearer the middle.
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Postby damaless » Tue Feb 13, 2007 5:26 pm UTC

My boyfriend had a program written to allow him to add entries to a social network diagram with a line of text. The code would manipulate the diagram to try to show up as cleanly as possible. There were various kinds of lines attaching nodes: one way arrows, two way arrows, dotted lines, bold lines, etc. Unfortunately the computer that it was on got stolen a few months ago. :(

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Postby LE4dGOLEM » Tue Feb 13, 2007 5:49 pm UTC

damaless wrote:My boyfriend had a program written to allow him to add entries to a social network diagram with a line of text. The code would manipulate the diagram to try to show up as cleanly as possible. There were various kinds of lines attaching nodes: one way arrows, two way arrows, dotted lines, bold lines, etc. Unfortunately the computer that it was on got stolen a few months ago. :(


...And you didn't backup? D:
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Postby damaless » Tue Feb 13, 2007 5:57 pm UTC

LE4dGOLEM wrote:
damaless wrote:My boyfriend had a program written to allow him to add entries to a social network diagram with a line of text. The code would manipulate the diagram to try to show up as cleanly as possible. There were various kinds of lines attaching nodes: one way arrows, two way arrows, dotted lines, bold lines, etc. Unfortunately the computer that it was on got stolen a few months ago. :(


...And you didn't backup? D:


Hey, don't look at me. It wasn't my computer. :P

RaisedByMongrels
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Re: "Movie Seating" Discussion

Postby RaisedByMongrels » Thu Jan 03, 2008 8:10 am UTC

Creating social network graphs can be kind of a sad "how strong is your group of friends?" game. If the removal of any one person causes the group to disintegrate into smaller groups of two or less, you lose. If you can remove three people and still have a cohesive group, you win. If you can remove yourself without affecting any of the points, you lose at life.

Just to be safe, I don't think I'll be making a graph.

devilgoatee
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Re: "Movie Seating" Discussion

Postby devilgoatee » Sun Jun 29, 2008 11:25 am UTC

Could this not be transformed into the travelling salesman problem? Considering only a straight line combination the problem is simply to take the optimum path through the social network. Give each relationship (edge of the network) a numerical value and find the Hamiltonian path that is optimal. That would make the problem NP-hard. ... as i write this I'm beginning to realise that the people who can solve this for large groups of friends are exactly those who wouldn't get invited to the cinema with a large group of friends. How sad.

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Re: "Movie Seating" Discussion

Postby Bennessy » Wed Jul 02, 2008 8:54 pm UTC

Nice to see you included a gay couple. :)

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Re: "Movie Seating" Discussion

Postby GoldenGryffin » Thu Jul 03, 2008 10:03 pm UTC

Another type of relationship to think about - exes. Amicable breakups may still have their complications and therefore might fall under the One-Way Crushes category, with more specific rules, e.g.: should not be seated together unless no other good combination can be found.

I'm in that situation right now :-\


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