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P2P, Web Services, Wireless, and Beyond
O'Reilly Emerging Technology Conference
Westin Santa Clara
May 13-16, 2002 -- Santa Clara, CA

Building on the momentum and excitement of the O'Reilly Peer-to-Peer and Web Services Conference.



Blog Lessons: User Patterns on LiveJournal
Clay Shirky, Decentralization Writer/Consultant, shirky.com

Track: Business
Date: Thursday, May 16
Time: 4:45pm - 5:30pm
Location: Winchester

Weblogs are "Small Worlds" models of human connectivity. Like the famous "6 Degrees of Kevin Bacon", the weblog world is populated with highly clustered but overlapping groups. A study of LiveJournal, a diary-format weblog, shows that the average pair of users in a group of 250,000 can be connected in four hops or less, and that this degree of connectivity relies on a small but fantastically connected core of users who serve as 'human routers'. The way their behavior affects the system as a whole has interesting implications for weblog design and use patterns.

The session covers the background on the Small Worlds model of connectivity, followed by a presentation of specific results from the LiveJournal study, and speculation about the effects of such clustering on the design of weblogs, and social software.

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