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Good questions Bruce!

That is why I put up my simple model for all SOCNET to see... and 
comment on.  I had many of those questions myself.

In the mideast example I am really showing 2 networks concurrently -- 
one of alliance or support and the other of repulsion or "sworn enemy." 
You see both visible links[positive ties drawn in gray] and invisible 
links that only have repelling forces.  The networks are both active at 
the same time, and therefore the whole graph experiences both 
attraction and repulsion concurrently -- based on topology -- who is 
connected to whom and how.

As you notice there are no lines/links/edges between those who are 
enemies -- just a repulsive force.  The "invisible" repulsion makes 
sense to me because it does not let nodes who are identified enemies 
settle close to each other in the simple spring embedder algorithm -- 
move alQaida near the US, EU or Israel and you will see the nodes 
quickly push apart, dragging their linked neighbors [those with visible 
edges] with them.

Iraq and USA was an interesting problem for me -- I did not know 
whether to state it as a positive or negative relationship. One can 
argue both sides, and a third -- it is both!   It is probably not an OR 
relationship but an AND relationship -- alliance and repulsion at the 
same time.  I will make that update now and see what happens.

OK, I just made the change and watched the network self-organize... the 
overall pattern has not changed much, though Iraq is consistently 
pushed closer to Russia as a result.


On Jul 25, 2006, at 5:11 PM, Neubauer, Bruce wrote:

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> I am confused by the notion of negative relationships.  It seems to me
> that if there are two poles to the meaning of a relationship it should
> be modeled as two relationships and not as one relationship with
> positive and negative values.  I see the presence or absence of a
> relationship as a question independent of the strength and meaning of a
> relationship if one exists.  Perhaps this is a question of the
> distinction between strength of relationship and meaning
> (interpretation) of a relationship.  How can the strength of a
> relationship be negative when zero represents the absence of a
> relationship?  Measures of things like love and hate are not 
> necessarily
> mutually exclusive in a linear way.  Also, is it more intuitive to
> represent the strength of a relationship by the thickness or color of
> the line rather than by the length of the line (or the distance between
> the nodes)?  Does a long line between nodes intuitively suggest a 
> strong
> association (the length of the line) or a weak association (the 
> distance
> between nodes)?
> Bruce

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