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My two social networks 27 October 2012

Posted by cooperatoby in Uncategorized.
Tags: , , ,

I’ve just discovered (after tens of thousands of other people) that the computation engine Wolfram|Alpha will do an amazing analysis of your Facebook usage if only you type ‘Facebook report’ into its search box. It calculates reams of information such as how many links you upload, what time of day you log in, who comments on your entries, where they say they live and what they say their birthdays are. It produces some amazing charts too, including a wordcloud of your comments (my most common word is ‘economic’).

Wolfram|Alpha network analysis of my Facebook friends

This is the best chart – a network analysis of my 91 Facebook friends. Reader, you can see that you fall into one of 4 main clusters. The salient fact though is that my ‘ffriends’ are rigidly divided into two worlds – work and family – no one bridges the gap. The co-operative world makes up the top half of the chart, with the British side in orange on the left and the European side in khaki on the right – linked by CECOP and Vivian. Brussels Labour is the outlier top left and COPIE & AEIDL are top right. Truus’s family is in blue bottom left, and my family in green bottom centre, linked by Truus herself, Zanna and Liana. Way over on the right are 3 old friends from Suma. Finally as is inevitable for a dumb computer, some people are in the wrong place – and so Ian Symonds has attached himself to Truus’s family.

It’s a fascinating diagram. I wonder whether the two halves of my schizophrenic existence will ever connect to each other? And if only WordPress had similar analytics.


1. cooperatoby - 28 October 2012

Mind you now you come to mention it, one could also try to plot one’s friends against the axes of political leanings and wealth – and see if that clustered them well!

2. cooperatoby - 28 October 2012

Dunno, but I like the colours! Seriously though I imagine that:
– the size of the blobs is the number of interactions I have with them (you are medium-sized but you just swelled a bit!);
– the distance between blobs presumably represents the number of transactions between them;
– the colours denote clusters that have some sort of self-referentiality or mutual coherence;
– I don’t think the cartesian co-ordinates have any meaning – just a way of displaying them clearly.
Imagine if it was 2-dimensional…
On the live map you can hover over the blobs and see who they are of course.

3. Simon Blackley - 28 October 2012

What do x, y, and size represent?

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