A Word on Networks and Nodes
If you recall from the 1990s, "Metcalfe's Law" stated that the effect of a telecommunications network is proportional to the square of the number of connected users of the system. For the dot-com era, this was adapted to say that the value of a network increased exponentially with the number of nodes.
VCs liked that very much and valued
accordingly. ; )
With big disruptions now, this is a good time to study networks and two of the main things I have been observing through others are 1) how they grow and 2) how hard it can be to extricate oneself from them.
Among my friends and relatives, some people are trying to downscale for various reasons and it is hard. People think that they are being unfriended, unlinked, and unfollowed due to differences in politics or 1st amendment conversations. But it is not always the case. Instead, some people have become wary of their own creations and just want to take a step back for now.
I have scaled back too, but not due to any ideological differences, real or perceived; for me it has just been a rethinking of exposed networks and their characteristics - both strengths and weaknesses. It's been great to have an avatar, join large semi-anonymous communities, and chat with/learn things from interesting people. But the networks can start taking on a life of their own - complex adaptive systems in themselves, with flaws, biases, judgments, and herd behaviors, as we see. Not surprising and not rocket science, but it's more out front now than it is normally.
Anyway, reading more on this and if you find it interesting too - one place for CAS research is the Santa Fe Institute
I'm looking for all kinds of resources on networks from a broad spectrum of political, legal, social, and technical perspectives. So, recommendations are welcome.
Going light now - less is more. But enjoy your weekends!
Edit: changed quasi-anonymous to semi-anonymous. Simplify!