***** To join INSNA, visit http://www.insna.org *****
The first half may be too basic for you as it covers research design too, but the chapters on specific topics are a good, theoretically-driven introduction.

Analyzing Social Networks by Borgatti, Everett, and Johnson


Also, the Sage Handbook of Social Network Analysis edited by Scott and Carrington has excellent chapters organized theory, topic, and methods. 


The search for the best techniques or algorithms to determine something like meaningful cut points between areas of a network may be enriched by some of the theory in this books.  

The other responses are all great, but these might provide some more food for thought about what SNA can offer.

And, yes, in my experience, this is a very welcoming and open community.  

I have sometimes found good answers by searching its archives.

Good Luck,
Jordi

On Mon, Jul 27, 2015 at 5:21 PM, Gary Warner <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
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I wonder if the group could help a newcomer with advice on some fundamental tasks, like a "Getting Started with Social Network Analysis"?

I have been gathering information about a certain group of social media users and which ones of them follow one another.   We have about 15 million individuals in this network which has very high connection groups within the overall network (72 million connections between them).  We would like to use some "well accepted" methods of finding core subgroups within this meshed network, but I have to confess, while I have done tons of data mining, I've never really done "Social Network Analysis" in a graph-theory type way.  I have many years experience analyzing primarily the structure of computer networks, malware, and botnets, and the criminals who run them, but this data set is far beyond my experience and I feel I need more proven tools and techniques to address it properly.  My old techniques seem to run out when I get much above 100,000 connections.

Any suggestions on good "getting started" books, articles, or papers would be most helpful.

I've loaded a subset of this data into Pajek ... it represents 8913 social media accounts with 3.9 million connections between them, but realize that I need some theoretical background in Social Network Analysis to really even understand the range of "What might I do next" possibilities.

My objective is to be able to find "strongly connected" and "weakly connected" members, and to determine if there is a connectivity threshold where the network would "split" into two or more clusters.

I would be grateful to the group for any suggested reading.  Not afraid to read!  I think I need a bit of basic theory before jumping in to the Pajek manual though.

As Thomas Jefferson wrote in 1769 to Thomas Turpin Shadwell:  "the only help a youth wants is to be directed what books to read, and in what order to read them."

That's the main help I'm asking for right now.  The answer may well be RTFM (Read The Fine Manual), but the question is which M to F'ing R first?

Thanks for any opinions, and I apologize if I've just stumbled across a list FAQ question.  A pointer to same would be appreciated if that is the right way to get started!


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Gary Warner
Director of Research in Computer Forensics
The University of Alabama at Birmingham
Center for Information Assurance and Joint Forensics Research
[log in to unmask]

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--
Jordi Comas

"There is nothing so practical as a good theory."  Kurt Lewin

Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship Blog (under construction): Simple Tools.

Netcentric: Resources for Teaching Network Theory and Research

Research and Writing Blog: Nets We Weave

Assistant Professor
School of Management
Bucknell University
Taylor 112
570 577 3161


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