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  • Because we will always seek order in chaos
  • Because we will always seek order in chaos
    Peter Lee, Creative Commons (2010) ©
Science

Get in line! The science of queueing

Whether you’re at the station in Dagenham or on Main Street in DisneyWorld, queueing is woven into the very fabric of how many cultures create order in a crowd. David Andrews, author of Why does the other line always move faster?, explains why we queue and the psychological effect it has on us.

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“Boredom can take on a feverish quality,” says author David Andrews, remembering the time he spent in the US Military. “You’d have to stand in line and look at the back of the next person's head, and there’s nothing to distract you.” And while many of us may not empathise directly with this experience, the boredom attached to standing in line is one most will know well. Studies show that the average Brit spends a year, two weeks and one day of their life in shop queues, while a year and three months is spend stuck in traffic. ...

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