4
The Effects of Too Much Choice

Interesting example from Intel’s Timothy Mattson regarding the dizzying array of languages currently in vogue for parallel programming:

They created two displays of gourmet jams. One display had 24 jars. The other had 6. Each display invited people to try the jams and offered them a discount coupon to buy the jam. They alternated these displays in a grocery store and tracked how many people passed the displays, how many people stopped and sampled the jams, and how many subsequently used the offered coupon to buy the jam.

The results were surprising.

  • 24 jar display: 60% of the people passing the display sampled the jam, 3% purchased jam.

  • 6 jar display: 40% of the people passing the display sampled the jam, 30% purchased jam.

(Via Daniel Pasco.)

Wednesday, 3 October 2007