New Mexico Supercomputing Challenge

Controlling the Spread of Gossip

Team: 130

School: Rio Rancho Cyber Academy

Area of Science: Social Science


Interim: Team Number:130
School Name: Rio Rancho Cyber Academy
Area of Science: Social Science
Project Title: Controlling the Spread of Gossip

Problem Definition:
The goal of this project is to find a way to control the spread of gossip through different population sizes. This will allow the common problem of calumny, which can be very harmful to relationships in many different settings, to be controlled as much as possible. We will do this through netlogo using a simulation with gossip being spread through different populations like a disease, with mediators that are the ones trying to control this gossip spread as well as just stop it. We believe that this is the most effective way to control the spread of gossip.

Problem Solution:
The environment in which this simulation will be conducted is through an epidemic or a spread of a sickness. This will represent the gossip being spread. The turtles (or agents) will be getting progressively lighter the more they spread gossip. They will also begin to go back towards their original shade the longer they go without spreading the gossip. The mediators will help to bring the “sick” agents back to their original shade as well.

Progress to Date:
Presently, a simulation Is being constructed to model how gossip is spread through different population sizes and are now adding our mediators. We have also modeled a real life simulation where we bought candy and gave it to one of the teachers. We then started to spread “gossip” that if they were to ask this teacher for candy, she would give it to them. One of us started this rumor and had the teacher write down who came in for candy and from which grade they were in. This project unfortunately failed at our small school but it shows that some people aren’t as trusting of gossip.

Expected Results:
After our experiment with spreading gossip at our small school failed, we decided we would use mediators to control the spread of gossip. The expected result of our first experiment was to have a decent amount of students go to get candy and have it tallied how many listened and spread the gossip. The problem with this experiment was that no one went up and go the candy or spread any other gossip. We decided that with mediators, we could control how it spreads and many more people to spread it.

Team Members: Emma Ivey, Sariah Morrison, and Abby Reyes
Sponsoring Teacher: Harry Henderson


Team Members:

  Emma Ivey
  Abby Reyes
  Sariah Morrison

Sponsoring Teacher: harry henderson

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