How do I create a virtual "camp jobs wheel"?
March 4, 2008 1:29 PM   Subscribe

How do I create a virtual "camp jobs wheel"?

Did you go to summer camp? If so, you might have had a jobs wheel, where all the campers were listed on the outside and the jobs on an inside circle. The counselor would move the wheel daily, every few days, once a week, and each person would get a new job.

I am in a learning group with a group of people (I think 36) and I need to create something like this - we are supposed to be paired up, switching every 8 weeks. I don't know how to do that - if I just move the list sequentially, some people will never get paired up.

I'm assuming this is easy, but I have no clue how to accomplish this. It's not like a tournament line up, since this switching will be continuing every 8 days for some time.

posted by schoenbc to Computers & Internet (8 answers total)
If you put everyone's name on the inside wheel, and everyone's name on the outside wheel, *in the same order*, then yes, everyone will get paired up eventually. You just have to be prepared for the degenerate case, which is everyone being paired up with himself -- just skip that one.

If I've understood your problem incorrectly, please explain and clarify a bit. Sounds fun!
posted by amtho at 1:34 PM on March 4, 2008

I am not sure why this is a problem? If you make two lists of the same people.

List1 List2
Mark Mark
June June
Jane Jane
Remy Remy
Tony Tony
Rick Rick

And just shift List2 by one place downward (with the last entry becoming the first entry) you have a system that matches everyone up with everyone else once.
posted by mmascolino at 1:43 PM on March 4, 2008 [1 favorite]

The solution suggested doesn't seem like it would work. You're not matching names to jobs, you're matching names to the same list of names.

Look, using the names above moved one down.

Inner Outer
Mark Rick
June Mark
Jane June
Remy Jane
Tony Remy
Rick Tony

So Rick works with Mark, but it also says that Mark works with June. Who works with Jane and so on. Doesn't seem like a wheel would work for this situation.
posted by yellowbinder at 2:44 PM on March 4, 2008

The interior ring could have numbers or colors on it, two of each. The two people with the same number or color assigned would have to work together.
posted by cabingirl at 3:12 PM on March 4, 2008

Use mmascolino's solution, but put half the names on the inner wheel and the other half on the outer wheel.

List1 List2
Mark Remy
June Tony
Jane Rick

After the switch:

List1 List2
Mark Rick
June Remy
Jane Tony
posted by kelseyq at 4:00 PM on March 4, 2008

The problem being, of course, that Rick & Remy never get paired up, nor do Mark and June. D'oh.
posted by kelseyq at 4:01 PM on March 4, 2008

It is like a tournament setup. In fact, it's a round robin tournament almost exactly. Wikipedia's page explains how it works.
posted by devilsbrigade at 4:03 PM on March 4, 2008

Response by poster: I would love to make a "wheel" but with so many names it would be huge (I think there are about 36 people total.....and this "The problem being, of course, that Rick & Remy never get paired up, nor do Mark and June" is the problem with having lists....

I'll try the Wikipedia suggestion, but I may just end up making a huge wheel at this point following the suggestion to put half the names on the outside wheel, half on the inside. I was hoping for a compute, rather than an "arts & crafts" solution, but if that's what it takes....

Thanks all for the suggestions.
posted by schoenbc at 12:30 PM on March 5, 2008

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