Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Eve

The run up to Christmas is over, and hopefully everyone has their Christmas shopping done. So now seems like as good a time as any to look at what the crowds are doing:
Now that is interesting. I think it is, anyway.

So first of all, the weekday spikes. It seems like a significant number of people left their Christmas shopping to the last week. Now fair enough if they've only just finished work/university/whatever.

Notice also the general week-on-week trend for the weekdays.

But more importantly than all that, look at today - Christmas Eve.


Everyone 'knows' that going shopping on Christmas Eve is suicidal. It's a well known cliché. But that's the thing - everyone thinks it's going to be insanely busy, so a lot of people avoid shopping centres.

But then, this means the shopping centres end up practically deserted (by Christmas standards). And it's not necessarily the result of what I mentioned last time - I was out there, and I saw the lack of crowds.

It's an interesting, and previously studied phenomenon.

I won't go into too much detail, cause it's past midnight on Christmas Eve. But if you're interested in this effect, and in this sort of thing in general, I would suggest reading up on Complexity Theory. In particular, I'd recommend this book, which covers this exact subject in one of the early chapters.

Of course, if we were looking at supermarkets, that would be a different story..


[Merry Christmas!]

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