Six degrees of separation!

The other class I take is on Thursday, Computer Mediated Communication by Prof Susan Herring. Some of the concepts obviously deal with some stuff we have in the R685 class. A few weeks back we were discussion the concept of six degrees of separation.  We decided to do a simple task for the purpose of the class…. we picked the most popular celebrity or politician person we could think of and count the number of links before we could actually reach him. The links between a Turkish student and President Bush was about 5 steps (!) and between another student and a famous actor were 6. It w as real fun exercise to do. The basic idea behind the six degrees of separation is that every person is no more than six steps away from every person on the Earth.  There have been a number of games and media being popularized on the basis of this concept.

It would be interesting to give this some more thought. This is owing to the huge rise in Internet usage and networking sites. The six steps between two people gain a personality of its own… they are the most crucial 6 steps to finding that next big job, or increasing your social circle. It’s just a thought… what if these links are overloaded and exhausted at some point? Would they need to be monitored, and distributed evenly to people? There may not be any links left to stick together, as people will recognize and be interested only in the most crucial ones. Also, how justified is it to say that everyone is connected to everyone else in the world only through 6 links- when half the ‘developing’ countries in the world don’t even count in this philosophy?

Nevertheless, the whole idea is pretty interesting and I would like to watch Six Degrees of Separation… will see if I can get my hands on it this December….


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: