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"Friend" clusters on Facebook - Accretions

Fata Morgana
2008-08-14 11:36
"Friend" clusters on Facebook
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"Friend" clusters on Facebook
Originally uploaded by morganya
Though we all know that Facebook "friends" != actual friends, I still found it interesting that various groups in my life who are represented on Facebook (and visualized with the Nexus app) are noticeably distinct based on the number of within-group vs. between-group links. I manually overlaid category names on these groups (though they all have fuzzy boundaries and could be subcategorized or classified differently).

It's also interesting that there's no sense of time here -- my Berkeley I-school connections are 2-3 years old, but those connections appear much more substantial (and central) than my (current) Stanford Communication connections or my brand-new Values in Design connections. Similarly, my UCBD links appear more extensive and central than my connections to other dance communities, though those connections are generally at least three years old. And I haven't seen most of my high-school "friends" since high school, and I wasn't even close with many of them then. There's also no sense of the type of connection -- professional contacts vs. social contacts (e.g. dancers) vs. close friends, for instance.

This also attests to the small-world nature of the Bay Area, which I generally rediscover at any reasonably heterogeneous Bay Area party. While the links aren't as dense as the within-group links, there's still substantial overlap between these various groups, particularly the dancers (upper leftish), bab5 (appropriately central), and the sociotechnical researchers (lower left). It is also interesting to me that there's actually some overlap between my high school friends and other contacts, largely because of visits I've made there or visits friends have made to me.
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modularformsboy
modularformsboy
2008-08-14 19:44 (UTC)
(no subject)
Ah Morgana, have you created a tool to make these graphs of yours?
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Fata Morgana
chimerically
2008-08-14 21:20 (UTC)
(no subject)
Nope, just took an image saved from the Nexus Facebook application which made the graph itself and overlaid the text in Photoshop ... but I imagine it wouldn't be too hard to integrate the two. :~)
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Jeff
lbchewie
2008-08-15 01:30 (UTC)
(no subject)
Thanks a lot! I've been meaning to do some type of graphing like this, and the Nexus graphing application was exactly what I had in mind.

I can't believe the interesting patterns it finds.
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