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Three thoughts...

(1) These (valid) critiques notwithstanding, let us acknowledge that it is interesting if there is some kind of fractal quality to large networks.

(2) One wonders what characteristic might distinguish networks that are self-similar from those that aren't.  Is it social vs. physical networks as Tom implies?  Or a function of size as Bettina suggests?  If size, what's the tipping point?

(3) INSNA members seem not to be part of the networks of paper reviewers and science reporters who are creating this "new" science of networks.  Why is that?

Best,

Steve

________________________________________________
Steven R. (Steve) Corman
Professor, Hugh Downs School of Human Communication
Arizona State University
http://www.public.asu.edu/~corman

Chair, Organizational Communication Division
International Communication Association
http://www.icahdq.org


-----Original Message-----
From: Social Networks Discussion Forum [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Bettina Hoser
Sent: Wednesday, February 02, 2005 7:09 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [SOCNET] All Networks Look the Same?

*****  To join INSNA, visit http://www.insna.org  *****

Hi
This self-similarity idea has been around as it seems for a while. I just checked my own (limited) literature base and found an article from 2002 http://arxiv.org/pdf/cond-mat/0211498 which was released in Physical Reveiw letter E.

As of now I do not have hands-on experience if this is really true, but it´s not a new idea.

But just as a philosophical thought: once the network - any network - gets big enough isn´t it somehow quite likely to become self-similar?

Best regards,
Bettina

--
Dipl.-Phys. Bettina Hoser
Informationsdienste und elektronische Märkte
Fakultät für Wirtschaftswissenschaften
Universität Karlsruhe (TH)
D-76128 Karlsruhe

Gebäude 20.20 RZ (Raum 164), Zirkel 2

Telefon: +49.721.608-8407
Telefax: +49.721.608-8403

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http://www.em.uni-karlsruhe.de

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