Posts Tagged Social
Scientists at the ETH Zurich analysed the international ownership network of multi-national companies. If you had a look at the intrinsic properties of real-world and biological networks, the 80-20 rule comes as no surprise: in biological networks, usually over 80% of the edges are covered by less than 20% of the nodes. A related phenomenon is called the Pareto Principle in economics. The core of this network contained 1318 companies, which
… represented 20 per cent of global operating revenues, the 1318 appeared to collectively own through their shares the majority of the world’s large blue chip and manufacturing firms – the “real” economy – representing a further 60 per cent of global revenues …
“Reality is so complex, we must move away from dogma, whether it’s conspiracy theories or free-market,” says James Glattfelder.
Reference: The Network of Global Corporate Control by Stefania Vitali, James B. Glattfelder, Stefano Battiston (2011) PLoS ONE 6(10): e25995. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0025995
How these findings relate to the error and attack tolerance of scale-free networks in the context of the current economic situation is further food for thought. But I urge caution to naïvely transfer insights from one domain to another, there are no simple (mono-causal) answers to complex problems. Especially when dealing with the emergent properties of networks, there is only one constant: they tend to work out quite differently from what we initially thought.
LinkedIn offers a visualisation of your network connections. While browsing and looking at the persons represented by the nodes and their proximity, directly hypothesis form in the head as to the common context (when and where one met). To me the accuracy of the layout and coloring is amazing! That the different clusters actually delineate different institutes and departments I had the pleasure to work with/at is a nice “proof-of-concept”, albeit a bit terrifying as to how much the network knows about us … if you already are at LinkedIn give it a spin to see “the community” emerging around yourself. Makes you also wonder what the guys running the social networks actually can do with the entirety of network data we dump on them. Anyway, have fun exploring your local network!
On January 18, 2012, sites all over the internet will be blacking out to protest and try to mobilize more people to speak out against this bill coming up in the Senate next week — S. 968: the Protect IP Act (PIPA) — in an attempt to let U.S. lawmakers know how much opposition there is. [WordPress.com News]
Unfortunately, this is really no hype – just recently I heard highly-paid, no-nonsense corporate lawyers on the topic saying they’d recommend their clients to basically shut down most of their internet-presence immediately in case this bill passes, just to be sure not to be sued to the bones. Ruling by fear, that is….
A video on the topic is on http://fightforthefuture.org/pipa/
Please see this post from last year on how the story developed.
Visualisation is right at the heart of my own work, too […]
and I know, having the data is not enough.
I have to show it in ways people both enjoy and understand.
Hans Rosling’s TED talks have been a shining and influential example to many (including myself, I hope) – here is him condensing the development of the last 200 years around the globe into an engaging presentation in just under 4 minutes.
Hans Rosling’s 200 Countries, 200 Years, 4 Minutes – The Joy of Stats – BBC Four – shared by Hyun P. via the group Wolfson College, Cambridge on LinkedIn.
“I kid you not, statistics is now the sexiest subject on the planet” says Hans Rosling – I guess the title is a (not so subtle) reference to the 1972 book from Dr. Alex Comfort.
Honestly, I am still coming to grips with some features of google+, but it’s gaining on me. Thanks to suggestions there, I came across this visualisation :
This video visualizes 5 hours of posts, comments, and likes on Google Plus condensed in to 4 minutes.
I think the way dynamical aspects of the network are highlighted is quite impressive and could be useful in the context of biomolecular networks as well:
More details explaining what’s going on are available on the youtube-page (click the youtube-logo in the lower right of the video). There you can switch from 360p to HD (up to 1080p) and watch it in full screen mode, which allows to clearly read the text and labels that pop up. A nice description is in “Take That, Google: Interactive Google+ Stream Visualizer Launching as Chrome Extension” – it is also mentioned among “The 65 Stories TechCrunch Didn’t Cover in November (But LAUNCH Did)” on (surprise!) LAUNCH.
Share files, chat on forums, browse and publish, anonymously and without fear of blocking or censorship! Then connect to your friends for even better security!
In the face of ill-motivated attempts to curb free speech and information exchange around the globe (not only pursued by standard totalitarian regimes that spring to mind) such efforts make increasingly sense – for example see
ideas that could dramatically transform life worldwide” (Scientific American)
The “Falling Walls” conference took place on 9th of November this year – after attending the (truely amazing) first installment 2 years ago, I can only highly recommend to check out the livestream recording – and there is a liveblog available, too.
Among the many innovative ideas is the “subtle” way of getting the speakers of the stage at the end of their alloted time – Enjoy!
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If you don’t like it…
Saying that you don't understand it
meaning "I don't believe it -
it's too crazy!
- it's the kind of thing ...
I just ...
I'm not going to accept it!"
The other person
well this kind -
I hope you come along with me,
... you have to accept it.
Because it's the way nature works!
If you wanna know
the way nature works
we looked at it, carefully:
that's the way it looks!
You don't like it?
GO SOMEWHERE ELSE!
To another universe -
where the rules are simpler -
philosophically more pleasing -
more psychologically easy -
I can't help it, OK?!
If I am going to tell you honestly
what the world looks like
to human beings who struggled
as hard as they can
to understand it :
I can only tell you what it looks like,
and I cannot make it any simpler ...
I am not gonna do this.
I am not gonna simplify it.
I am not gonna fake it.
I am not gonna tell you
it looks something like
a ball bearing on a spring -
So I am gonna tell you
what it really is like
and if you don't like it
THAT'S TOO BAD!
Richard P. Feynman,
QED Lecture@University of Auckland