EppsNet Archive: Social Networks

Ayatollah So

18 Apr 2016 /

In Iran you can vote for anyone for President so long as that person has been approved by the Ayatollah Khameini. We Americans call that system a dictatorship.

Voters in America recently discovered that they live under an Iranian type of system and didn’t know it. In the primaries, voters participate in some sort of ritualistic placebo voting while party leaders select the candidates. . . .

Thanks to social media, and Trump, America will get its first taste of real democracy. If it doesn’t work out, we can always go back to the Iranian model and hope for our self-awareness to diminish over time.


How Would You Like to Share This News?

18 Sep 2015 /

New Yorker cartoon


Neil Young in LA

27 Feb 2014 /
Neil Young

Neil Young is playing a couple of solo acoustic shows next month at the Dolby Theatre. Tickets went on sale Monday morning, but somehow I missed the fact that they’d been available via “pre-sale” since last Friday and were all gone by Monday morning.

What a heartbreaker. Fortunately, thanks to the wonders of technology and social networks, Mr. Young and his team were able to inform me via Facebook that a third show had been added and I was able to log in and get tickets for that one.

The sold-out shows are on a Saturday and Sunday. The new show is on a Tuesday. Am I looking forward to driving in to LA and back on a Tuesday? No, but on a list of solo acoustic shows for which I’d be most willing to knock over my own mother to get a ticket, Neil Young would be second, behind Bob Dylan.

Unlike some singer-songwriters, Young also has a distinctive style and talent as a musician, plus an almost-50-year portfolio of great songs — not clever lyrics or inventive melodies, but a Neil Young song is as real as the day is long. They get a hold of you, like a meathook.

A solo acoustic performance is like he comes over to your house and picks up a guitar. Can you imagine that? Neil Young is at my house and he just picked up a guitar. “Do you mind?” he asks.

One more thought on Bob Dylan: Solo acoustic Bob Dylan is part of the iconography of America in the 1960s. I don’t expect Bob Dylan to ever do a solo acoustic show again but if he did, the significance of it I think would be second only to Jimi Hendrix playing a concert after coming back from the dead.


Coursera Recommendations

27 Jan 2013 /

Coursera‘s been around long enough now that some classes are being offered for a second time, including a couple that I’ve taken and recommend:


Visualizing Social Networks

27 Oct 2012 /

I’m taking a Social Network Analysis class on Coursera. These weren’t assignments for the class (well, the Facebook one sort of was), just some experiments I wanted to share.

Facebook

You can use netvizz to download a gdf file of your Facebook network, i.e., all of your Facebook friends and all of the connections between them.

You can then use your favorite graph analysis software (I used Gephi, which is open-source and free) to look for patterns.

My Facebook network is in the image below. Of the four main clusters, two consist of co-workers, one is family and one is people I know from roller hockey.

Facebook network

Click image to enlarge

Twitter

This is the network of people I follow on Twitter. I used NodeXL (a free, open-source template for Excel) to download and lay out the data.

Twitter Network

Click image to enlarge

I labeled the nodes in this one. With a few exceptions, the light blue nodes are people I follow because I think they’re funny, the light green nodes are related to sports and/or USC, the dark green nodes are people of professional interest, the red nodes are former colleagues, and the dark blue nodes are everyone else.

The size of the node indicates number of tweets, i.e., larger nodes tweet more than smaller nodes.

LinkedIn

My LinkedIn network is a little bigger than my Facebook or Twitter. The green, yellow, blue, purple and orange clusters are co-workers and recruiters. The gray nodes at the top are people with whom I share one or more professional interests. You can see that they split out into multiple sub-groups.

LinkedIn network

Click image to enlarge

I used the LinkedIn Maps application to generate the graphic.

Summary

These are small-world networks and I had a good idea in advance about who was connected to who and why.

The value of tools like this is in applying them to “real world” networks. In the absence of analytical tools to extract patterns from raw data, large, complex networks just look like giant hairballs.

To give you an idea, this image shows what my Facebook network looks like in Gephi before applying a layout algorithm,

Facebook hairball

Click image to enlarge


I’ve Got a Little List

22 Apr 2012 /
Koko

From the LinkedIn profile of a linguistically challenged IT manager:

High-Level Strategic Planner and Executioner


Living in the Digital World

26 Oct 2011 /

A 2011 study by telecommunications giant Ericsson found that 35% of iPhone and Android users check their email or Facebook account before getting out of bed in the morning.


Alone Together

26 Oct 2011 /
Alone Together

Image by Global X via Flickr

We are lonely but fearful of intimacy. Constant connectivity offers the illusion of companionship without the demands of friendship. We can’t get enough of each other if we can have each other at a distance and in amounts we can control.


Hashtag

18 Jun 2011 /

My wife dominates the Twitter landscape with almost 1,000 followers . . .

“I have to say something to my followers about my son going to college,” she says.

The boy overhears this and pipes in: “My only child is leaving for college in two months. Hashtag sadbutproud.”


Thomas Jefferson on Weinergate

7 Jun 2011 /
Thomas Jefferson

Rep. Weiner of New York — one of the 13 original colonies — has been sending photos of his penis to women in Texas, Washington and other points west.

When I was president, Texas and Washington weren’t even part of the country, and if I wanted to show a woman my dick, she had to be right there in the room with me.1

And still there are some misfits who insist that there is no such thing as progress.

  1. Yes, I could have made a sketch and sent it through the mail but that could take weeks.

Did I Just Say That Out Loud?

7 Jun 2011 /


The Lord Moves in Mysterious Ways

22 Jul 2010 /

My eyes were severely burned by a toxic poison.Hospitalized Mon.Excruciating pain.Now home.Pray my sight loss is restored

Rick Warren

The Lord moves in mysterious ways, e.g., blinding a mega-pastor.

Call me a skeptic, but if I were blind and in excruciating pain, I wouldn’t be sending Twitter updates. These guys like to exaggerate and call attention to themselves.

Update: Doctors have determined that Warren was unable to see because he had his eyes closed. I’m not kidding.


Twitter: 2010-06-26

26 Jun 2010 /
Twitter

How Can I Help You?

13 Feb 2010 /
soccer practice

How can I help you succeed? How can I help you ask strong questions, take wise risks and deliver great content? How can I help you prosper? Most importantly, how can I help you learn and make new connections? How can I help you serve the larger group, of which we are both a part?


Why Social Networks Matter

1 Dec 2009 /

Life After Death

29 Oct 2009 /

What Happens to Your Facebook Profile When You Die?

I plan to post updates from the afterlife. Example: “Why is everything red?”


Microblog: 2009-04-06

6 Apr 2009 /

Daily Twitter for 2009-03-17

17 Mar 2009 /
  • RT @BonnieLowe: Chris Brogan’s “If I Started Today” post about social media/networking: http://tinyurl.com/6o5lx3 #
  • eating a green bagel. i m 1/2 irish myself frm okeefes & flynns on my moms side #

Oh the Vacuity!

12 Mar 2009 /

One of my in-laws says to me, “I enjoy reading your Facebook updates.”

“Thanks,” I say. “I enjoy reading yours too. When I’m having trouble sleeping.”


LinkedIn Meta

28 Jan 2009 /

If you’re not on LinkedIn this isn’t going to be funny but I got this email today from my brother:

I’m going through a social media epiphany…so “I’d like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn.” 🙂