Daily Bookmarks 10/10/2009

  • Great example of why I get so frustrated when I hear people complaining about how terrible it is that students copy and paste content. I’d like to see the teachers and professors stop using uncited content themselves first; I see a lot more problems with people with graduate degrees. This lecturer on effective writing plagiarized content for handouts while simultaneously admonishing students to not plagiarize.

    tags: writing, education, highered, plagiarism

  • Power laws describing how networks and social networking work, some supported by research, some simply observations of human behavior

    tags: networks, socialnetworking, economics

    • Amara’s Law (backstory) states that “we tend to overestimate the effect of a technology in the short run and underestimate the effect in the long run.
    • 11. Metcalfe’s Law

      This was the original conception of network effects, whereby the potential value of a network grows exponentially according to its size.

    • The fundamental definition of a network effect is “when a product or service has more value the more that other people have it too.
    • In fact, the Principle of Least Effort notes that they will tend to use the most convenient method, in the least exacting way available, with interaction stopping as soon as minimally acceptable results are achieved. As a result, well-known social scientist Clay Shirky notes that the most “brutally simple” social model often is the most successful one (using Twitter as an example.)
    • Reed’s Law

      Researcher David Reed discovered that the network effect of social systems is much higher than would otherwise be expected, helping to explain the sudden rise of social systems in the latter half of this decade. While adding a social architecture to a piece of software for no specific reason isn’t helpful either, it turns out that in general, software (and indeed, any networked system) is better the more social it is.

    • Reflexivity asserts that social actions can and do in fact influence the fundamental behavior of a social system and that these newly-influenced set of fundamentals can then proceed to change expectations, thus influencing new behavior. The process continues in a self-reinforcing pattern.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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