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The Emerging Science of Superspreaders (And How to Tell If You're One Of Them)

The Emerging Science of Superspreaders (And How to Tell If You're One Of Them)
Who are the most influential spreaders of information on a network? That’s a question that marketers, bloggers, news services and even governments would like answered. Not least because the answer could provide ways to promote products quickly, to boost the popularity of political parties above their rivals and to seed the rapid spread of news and opinions. So it’s not surprising that network theorists have spent some time thinking about how best to identify these people and to check how the information they receive might spread around a network. But there’s a problem. But there is growing evidence that information does not spread through real networks in the same way as it does through these idealised ones. So the question of how to find the superspreaders remains open. In the past, network scientists have developed a number of mathematical tests to measure the influence that individuals have on the spread of information through a network. Related:  Social Network SystemsDynamism

Niice. A search engine with taste. Measuring Large-Scale Social Networks with High Resolution This paper describes the deployment of a large-scale study designed to measure human interactions across a variety of communication channels, with high temporal resolution and spanning multiple years—the Copenhagen Networks Study. Specifically, we collect data on face-to-face interactions, telecommunication, social networks, location, and background information (personality, demographics, health, politics) for a densely connected population of 1 000 individuals, using state-of-the-art smartphones as social sensors. Here we provide an overview of the related work and describe the motivation and research agenda driving the study. Figures Citation: Stopczynski A, Sekara V, Sapiezynski P, Cuttone A, Madsen MM, et al. (2014) Measuring Large-Scale Social Networks with High Resolution. Editor: Yamir Moreno, University of Zaragoza, Spain Received: February 15, 2014; Accepted: April 2, 2014; Published: April 25, 2014 Copyright: © 2014 Stopczynski et al. Introduction Related Work Data collection

Nasa-funded study: industrial civilisation headed for 'irreversible collapse'? | Nafeez Ahmed | Environment A new study partly-sponsored by Nasa's Goddard Space Flight Center has highlighted the prospect that global industrial civilisation could collapse in coming decades due to unsustainable resource exploitation and increasingly unequal wealth distribution. Noting that warnings of 'collapse' are often seen to be fringe or controversial, the study attempts to make sense of compelling historical data showing that "the process of rise-and-collapse is actually a recurrent cycle found throughout history." Cases of severe civilisational disruption due to "precipitous collapse - often lasting centuries - have been quite common." The independent research project is based on a new cross-disciplinary 'Human And Nature DYnamical' (HANDY) model, led by applied mathematician Safa Motesharrei of the US National Science Foundation-supported National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center, in association with a team of natural and social scientists.

Here are 89 Life Hacks That Will Make Your New Year So Much Better As you go into the New Year, remember that things can be better than previous years. Maybe you'll get a raise, date someone new or even adopt an adorable pet to welcome into your family. But, if you fail at all of those things (sorry, if you do, but the chances are you may), here are life hacks that you can use to make your 2014 a lot better. Facebook feelings are contagious: Study examines how emotions spread online You can’t catch a cold from a friend online. But can you catch a mood? It would seem so, according to new research from the University of California, San Diego. Published in PLOS ONE, the study analyzes over a billion anonymized status updates among more than 100 million users of Facebook in the United States. “Our study suggests that people are not just choosing other people like themselves to associate with but actually causing their friends’ emotional expressions to change,” said lead author James Fowler, professor of political science in the Division of Social Sciences and of medical genetics in the School of Medicine at UC San Diego. There is abundant scientific literature on how emotion can spread among people – through direct contact, in person – not only among friends but also among strangers or near-strangers. Fowler worked on the study with Lorenzo Coviello – a PhD student in the electrical and computer engineering department of the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering.

What to Do When an Online Community Starts to Fail - Walter Frick by Walter Frick | 9:38 AM October 31, 2013 Success breeds success online. Indeed, if there is one maxim that dominates the fate of digital communities it is that of network effects — the more users participating in a community, the more valuable it will be to new users. As networks like Twitter and Facebook scale, their advantage over nascent platforms becomes seemingly insurmountable. In one case, Yelp faces a class action suit by users in California alleging that they deserve to be paid for their contributions, along with allegations by researchers that up to 20 percent of its reviews are fake; in another, MIT Technology Review reports on Wikipedia’s shrinking contributor base and the challenges it faces in attracting new and more diverse editors. Rewarding Top Users is Important, But Not Enough Believe it or not, online communities have been the subject of study for at least 20 years at this point, much of which has focused on starting and scaling them. (Emphasis mine.)

Social Network Analysis Brief Description: "Social network analysis is the mapping and measuring of relationships and flows between people, groups, organisations, computers or other information/knowledge processing entities." (Valdis Krebs, 2002). Social Network Analysis (SNA) is a method for visualizing our people and connection power, leading us to identify how we can best interact to share knowledge. History: When to use: Visualize relationships within and outside of the organization.Facilitate identification of who knows who and who might know what - teams and individuals playing central roles - thought leaders, key knowledge brokers, experts, etc.Identify isolated teams or individuals and knowledge bottlenecks.Strategically work to improve knowledge flows.Accelerate the flow of knowledge and information across functional and organisational boundaries.Improve the effectiveness of formal and informal communication channels.Raise awareness of the importance of informal networks. How to use: Training on SNA Tags

The iceberg that sinks organizational change How does the iceberg impact organizational change? Some aspects of organizational culture are visible on the surface, like the tip of an iceberg, while others are implicit and submerged within the organization. Because these ingrained assumptions are tacit and below the surface, they are not easy to see or deal with, although they affect everything the organization does. Most of an icebergs bulk lies below the surface. Ships that ignore the ice below the water are in mortal danger. Likewise, organizational change efforts may flounder because of a lack of organizational focus. The iceberg that sinks organizational change The change management iceberg is visualizing the essence of change in organizations: Dealing with organizational barriers. Embed code: Click here to get this infographic for your website Before embarking on change make sure to understand the organizational culture! Changing an organization’s culture About the author

Mapping Twitter Topic Networks: From Polarized Crowds to Community Clusters Polarized Crowds: Political conversations on Twitter Conversations on Twitter create networks with identifiable contours as people reply to and mention one another in their tweets. These conversational structures differ, depending on the subject and the people driving the conversation. Six structures are regularly observed: divided, unified, fragmented, clustered, and inward and outward hub and spoke structures. These are created as individuals choose whom to reply to or mention in their Twitter messages and the structures tell a story about the nature of the conversation. If a topic is political, it is common to see two separate, polarized crowds take shape. While these polarized crowds are common in political conversations on Twitter, it is important to remember that the people who take the time to post and talk about political issues on Twitter are a special group. Conversational archetypes on Twitter Why is it useful to map the social landscape this way? What this all means Figure 2

Dana Meadows: 12 Leverage Points to Change the World | Brain Nation Archimedes’ Lever“Give me a lever long enough … and I shall move the world” - Archimedes Every organization, company or “system” can be changed in only certain ways. These are the leverage points – the places where change is possible. (The term “leverage” is originally taken from mechanical engineering and physics.) The 12 universal Leverage Points for changing any system, according to Dana Meadows are (the higher the number in the list, the more effective): Donella Meadows Donella “Dana” Meadows is credited for building a gateway into the world of systems thinking that any lay person could trod and be inspired by. To cut through some of the systems jargon, here are 3 examples of these leverage points, in Meadows’ own words: (1) Constants, parameters, numbers: “consider the national debt. (6) The gain around driving positive feedback loops: “A positive feedback loop is self-reinforcing. And one more: Humanity is headed for a trap? “Speak the truth. Like this: Like Loading...

Applying algorithm to social networks can reveal hidden connections criminals use to commit fraud Fraudsters beware: the more your social networks connect you and your accomplices to the crime, the easier it will be to shake you from the tree. The Steiner tree, that is. In an article recently published in the journal Computer Fraud and Security, University of Alberta researcher Ray Patterson and colleagues from the University of Connecticut and University of California – Merced outlined the connection linking fraud cases and the algorithm designed by Swiss mathematician Jakob Steiner. Fraud is a problem that costs Canadians billions of dollars annually and countless hours of police investigations. The criminal path of least resistance To quote a television gumshoe, everything's connected. "You're really trying to find the minimum set of connectors that connect these people to the various [network] resources," he said. Fraud and the Steiner tree, by the numbers "All of these things that we see in life, behind them is a mathematical representation," said Patterson.