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Unread postAuthor: D_Hall » Wed Dec 16, 2009 10:56 am

SpudBlaster15 wrote:I find it odd that fewer and fewer people are becoming interested in a hobby that should be steadily growing in popularity.

Why do you think it should be growing in popularity?

Personal opinion: The creation of youtube (and similar sites) sparked an interest in such toys as people who may have never heard of spud guns found out about them by watching the videos online. In time, the novelty wears off and they go back to downloading porn (or whatever).

Conclusion: I think we're just seeing interest return to "pre-internet video" levels.
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Unread postAuthor: Willdebeers » Wed Dec 16, 2009 2:17 pm

D_Hall wrote:
SpudBlaster15 wrote:I find it odd that fewer and fewer people are becoming interested in a hobby that should be steadily growing in popularity.

Why do you think it should be growing in popularity?

Personal opinion: The creation of youtube (and similar sites) sparked an interest in such toys as people who may have never heard of spud guns found out about them by watching the videos online. In time, the novelty wears off and they go back to downloading porn (or whatever).

Conclusion: I think we're just seeing interest return to "pre-internet video" levels.


:roll:




I do agree, but surely after watching these videos, people make them, and then their friends see them and say "I want wanna those!"? It seems illogical to think otherwise.
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Unread postAuthor: SpudBlaster15 » Wed Dec 16, 2009 4:29 pm

D_Hall wrote:Why do you think it should be growing in popularity?

Personal opinion: The creation of youtube (and similar sites) sparked an interest in such toys as people who may have never heard of spud guns found out about them by watching the videos online. In time, the novelty wears off and they go back to downloading porn (or whatever).

Conclusion: I think we're just seeing interest return to "pre-internet video" levels.


This is likely a valid analysis; I have seen that exact scenario occur with several of my peers. In fact, Youtube is exactly how I was initially introduced to spudding. A few of my friends came across the immensely popular Autostream potato cannon video, and were so enthralled by the cannons, they decided to build a couple of them immediately. After they showed their creations to me, I was instantly hooked.

That was more than 3 years ago, and I'm still here building and firing cannons. However, my friends lost interest much more quickly. One of them gave up the hobby after a month, but the other lasted nearly a year and a half, and was fairly active on this site.

That said, I would expect that with the long-term existence of Youtube videos relating to spud guns, and the growing proportion of adolescents in North America and otherwise, the popularity of the hobby should be growing, or at least maintaining its current level.

As for why this is not occurring, Jack's comment is probably accurate.

It's probably a sad reflection of the fact that today's adolescents are increasingly more interested in spending time in front of their xbox/playstation/wii or posting effeminate photos of themselves on myspace/facebook/hi5
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Unread postAuthor: kozak6 » Sun Dec 20, 2009 8:10 pm

I think Jack's partially right.

I would agree that spudgunning might tend to be a transient hobby. However, I think it's more complicated than simply blaming the X-Box.

I think the demands of high school, work, higher education and life in general are also important factors.

I also wonder how many former spudgunners are diverted to firearms.
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Unread postAuthor: jackssmirkingrevenge » Mon Dec 21, 2009 1:08 am

kozak6 wrote:I think the demands of high school, work, higher education and life in general are also important factors.


Definitely, having a job and a social life/relationship does tend to make it hard to find time to properly indulge if your hobby.

I also wonder how many former spudgunners are diverted to firearms.


Also a good point, I know for a fact that many get into spudding either because they are into kinetic energy but cannot obtain fire/air arms because they are too young or because of legal restrictions in their area. In my case that's how it started, but now that I have the money and rights to invest in commercially made weapons I still prefer to "roll my own", for a variety of reasons but primarily the satisfaction of having designed and built something yourself.

There are many hobbies that offer this type of making-something-that-works satisfaction, but nothing says "It works!" like seeing a marble blown straight through an old speaker box :D (for some reason I got a flashback to my first ball valve pneumatic :) )
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Unread postAuthor: scianiac » Mon Dec 21, 2009 1:34 am

Being 17 (18 in 13 days) I have to agree that although not fully attributed to games and internet they have a strong influence. I have seen many of my friends fall into the mainstream life of hours on the xbox and facebook every five seconds but for me it lacks the creativity I crave. For me I can't see myself ever stopping spudding altogether. But I have so many hobbies, everything from computers to machining, it's hard to find time to do them all so they enter through phases where things like spudding may get forgotten for months. So I guess I do share my generation's short attention span which often leads to things never getting completed and lost interest altogether.
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Unread postAuthor: D_Hall » Mon Dec 21, 2009 11:29 am

kozak6 wrote:I think the demands of high school, work, higher education and life in general are also important factors.

The same could be said for ANY hobby.

I also wonder how many former spudgunners are diverted to firearms.

And for every person who turns 18 there's another person who's just been born. Now, if you want to say there's something special about a certain generation(*), fine. But your current argument would apply to say... Why spud guns are a rare hobby among the 30somethings while being common for teenagers and not why spudding appears to by dying according to google.



(*) Example: Model rockets. They were MUCH more popular in the 1970s. Significance is easy: The generation that saw the space race was inspired by rockets much more profoundly than any generation that followed.
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Last edited by D_Hall on Mon Dec 21, 2009 11:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Unread postAuthor: jackssmirkingrevenge » Mon Dec 21, 2009 11:36 am

D_Hall wrote:The generation that saw the space race was inspired by rockets much more profoundly than any generation that followed.


Good times for good science :) my generation was inspired by radioactive surfer turtles *sigh*

The same could be said for ANY hobby.


True, however having something like say golf as a hobby is more socially acceptible, even though you're essntially doing the same thing to lower specifications :roll:
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Unread postAuthor: D_Hall » Mon Dec 21, 2009 11:49 am

jackssmirkingrevenge wrote:like say golf as a hobby is more socially acceptible, even though you're essntially doing the same thing to lower specifications :roll:

OK, but that would be saying that popularity is falling off due to social norms increasingly frowning on spudding. It says nothing regarding the original argument being addressed (which can be summed up, "not enough hours in the day").
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Unread postAuthor: jimmy101 » Mon Dec 21, 2009 12:07 pm

It seems to me that the apparent drop in interest is simply due to a fixed number of people being interested in things like this.

The big surge in spud gunning happened when the internet became widely available, not when things like utube showed up. Instead of the sport spreading by word of mouth it was suddenly spread worldwide via the web. The quality of the builds went way up since people could share ideas and experience.

Now something approaching 20 years later most people predisposed to things like spudding have found the hobby and many have moved on to other things. The big pool of interested people that just needed the inspiration is gone. All that is left are the kids growing up.

I suspect that the same thing happened to many other garage sports. Water rockets, coil guns etc. have probably gone through the same pattern of web induced explosive growth followed by an apparent decline.
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Unread postAuthor: psycix » Wed Dec 23, 2009 12:54 pm

jimmy101 wrote:I suspect that the same thing happened to many other garage sports. Water rockets, coil guns etc. have probably gone through the same pattern of web induced explosive growth followed by an apparent decline.

Let's find out!

It seems that your theory is correct.
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Unread postAuthor: D_Hall » Wed Dec 23, 2009 3:44 pm

psycix wrote:
jimmy101 wrote:I suspect that the same thing happened to many other garage sports. Water rockets, coil guns etc. have probably gone through the same pattern of web induced explosive growth followed by an apparent decline.

Let's find out!

It seems that your theory is correct.


With spikes every spring... No doubt corresponding to all those grade school physics demonstrations that take place as an excuse for teachers to get the kids (and themselves) outside and in the sun on a nice spring day!
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Unread postAuthor: jackssmirkingrevenge » Wed Dec 23, 2009 3:49 pm

D_Hall wrote:With spikes every spring...


And surprisingly popular in the Philippines, maybe "spudgun" means something in another language :? :D

Also, it turned up this disturbing incident :shock:
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