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wow, that's a compelling title...I definitely opened it from google reader just because of the title.

Great analysis of the interpersonal effects of social networks. I guess the big question is how do we accomplish using our tools -- a web browser ui?

Pete Warden

I loved this book because it gave me a mental model to describe patterns I see all the time in my professional life.

As the saying goes, every science starts off as stamp-collecting, and Burt has his hands full trying to describe reality. He doesn't offer any suggestions on how to use this information, but I took away a few insights that could be useful for designing tools:

Reputation is the currency that flows around networks. You make new connections and take action based on what you hear from mutual contacts. That implies that you should base a network around recommendations and other signs of approval, rather than just the existence of a connection between two people. At the moment 'friending' is an implicit recommendation, but it would be powerful to have that recommendation step explicitly be the primitive used to build networks.

Volume is far less important than variation in your contacts. To help promote brokerage, we should make contacts outside your usual circle more prominent and accessible, possibly by expertise location or something similar.

Valdis Krebs

Thanks for the link Pete!

>> a web browser ui...

take a look at these for soc nets via browser...


Pete Warden

No problem Valdis, you've got the most useful visualizations I've seen. I've got some of my own favorites from your site up here too:

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