Unplugging from the Social Network

On the benefits of:

I was completely unplugged for the first time in months, and it felt really, really good…

(read the full article on thrillist.com)


and the complete pointlessness of it:

… the unplugging movement is the latest incarnation of an ageless effort to escape the everyday, to retreat from the hustle and bustle of life in search of its still core.… Read the rest

Game Changer: The Topology of Creativity

Game Changer: The Topology of Creativity

Mathijs de Vaan and David Stark, Columbia University
Balazs Vedres, Central European University

This article examines the sociological factors that explain why some creative teams are able to produce game changers—cultural products that stand out as distinctive while also being critically recognized as outstanding.… Read the rest

Of Growth and Globalisation

Latin America wants to rejoin the world. Will the world reciprocate?

Some countries in Latin America, especially those on the Pacific seaboard, like Mexico, Chile and Peru, never turned their backs on globalization. Others did. Boosted by record prices for their commodity exports, they turned inward and subjected their economies to state controls, repeating on a smaller scale the model that failed the region in the 1970s.… Read the rest

Cutting costs: Sustainability matters even in complex networks

A team of researchers at Northeastern University, led by famous networks researcher and physicist Albert-Laszlo Barabasi, explored how the concept of sustainability can be implemented in network analysis. The researchers approached this idea by defining the concept of control energy or “the amount of effort needed to control real-world complex systems.” They reported that this new metric can be utilized in all kinds of real-world complex systems, such as identifying critical points in online network security systems.… Read the rest

Indian Monsoon: Novel approach allows early forecasting

Scientists from Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research used network analysis to predict Indian monsoon timing more accurately and significantly earlier. The new predictions will help farmers in the region decide when to plant their crops. As co-author Jürgen Kurths explains, “On Facebook or Twitter, you can follow how news is spreading, one posting leading to many others.… Read the rest

“Tracking the Social Networks of Genes Disrupted in Complex Diseases”

unnamedThe Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics reports on a recent study by a team of scientists from DCB, UNIL, SIB, CHUV, MIT and Harvard. The team tracked the social networks of genes disrupted in complex diseases. Taking inspiration from social networks, the researchers applied techniques similar to those used in SNA to gain information about users (i.e.… Read the rest

“Twitter can predict hurricane damage as well as emergency agencies”

twitter fileJohn Bohannon of Science News reports on a recent study by Yury Kryvasheyeun, a research at Australia’s National Information and Communications Technology Research Centre of Excellence in Melbourne.Kryvasheyeun’s team demonstrated that twitter data collected during Hurricane Sandy in 2012 can be a better predictor of damage that FEMA’s models for a fraction of the cost.… Read the rest