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Tuesday, November 04, 2003

Monday November 3, 2003. A glum day for me, till I read someone's account of having to explain that dead people should not be counted as active employees. That restored my sense of humor.

I still didn't accomplish most of what I'd intended to get done today. But I got two scenes ahead on "The Caterpillar on the Leaf".
3) Name-dropping and self-promotion pay off
M. Rosvall and K. Sneppen
Physical Review Letters (print issue: 24 October 2003)

Correctness is not as important as communication. That's a key finding from a new model of the Internet and other social and biological networks. The authors model society as a network of individuals, all trying to adjust their connections to get as close as possible to the center of the network. The authors find that where local communication is strong, the society tends to organize around a stable central hub, but when local communication is weak, chaos ensues. For an individual trying to be the center of attention, success comes from sharing the information one has about the position and connections of others, even if that information is incorrect. Surprisingly, having correct information barely improved an individual's status at all.
Journal article: http://link.aps.org/abstract/PRL/v91/e178701

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