Thursday, 7 May 2009

networking science - P(k) ~ k−γ

I was watching a show on the BBC this week called 'Six Degrees of Separation'. For those people who have not heard about Six Degrees of separation, it all started with Hollywood star Kevin Bacon and three college students who wanted to create a game. The idea being to connect Kevin Bacon to another actor via a number of actors through films they have been in – in no more than six steps ending in. For example if we start with Alec Baldwin.

Alec Baldwin - elizabethtown - Orlando Bloom - pirates of the caribbean - Johnny Depp - platoon - Charlie Sheen - young guns - Kiefer Sutherland - flatliners - Kevin Bacon 

I am sure there are numerous other ways to get there and some possibly shorter but hopefully you get the point. The game became a huge hit with Kevin Bacon himself setting up which is based on the idea so people can recommend charitable projects to get involved in. Anyway back to the thing I really wanted to write about, network science. 

Network science is a relatively new science that has been developed by a number of scientists from around the world. What I found particularly interesting about the science was how it potentially can predict the future and also how both organic or biological networks work in the same way as man made networks such as the internet. The above network image is one of the recent swine flu outbreak.

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