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Six degrees of separation

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posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 02:16 PM
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Alright guys,

Just wondering about your opinions on this popular theory:


Six degrees of separation (also referred to as the "Human Web") refers to the idea that everyone is at most six steps away from any other person on Earth, so that a chain of, "a friend of a friend" statements can be made to connect any two people in six steps or fewer. It was originally set out by Frigyes Karinthy and popularized by a play written by John Guare.


Link: Wiki: Six degrees of seperation



Anyone think this is possible? If so, what about the implications with regards to theories such as the global consciousness project and such like?

Cheers,




posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 02:42 PM
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reply to post by Death_Kron
 


Possible? I think it is fact, and I think 6 degrees was a couple of hundred years ago. I think in the "information age" and the ever-shrinking globe it is more like 3 or 4 degrees! I recently found myself connected by only 4 degrees to Nelson Mandela! I don't know the people in the network that well or have any intention of following up, but technically I know someone that knows someone that knows a couple that spent a weekend in the presence of Mandela, he held their kids, etc.!

I think Facebook (or Myspace can't remember which) was an experiment in this concept that proved correct to an astonishing degree!

Yes, Six Degrees is entirely do-able and conservative in my opinion. I think 3 degrees is a possiblity.

ON another note, the Will Smith movie, "Six Degrees of Separation" was one of the weirdest and sorriest movies ever! Still kudos for his convincing portrayal of a mixed up homosexual teen, but still a very, very odd movie!



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 02:47 PM
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reply to post by getreadyalready
 


That's brilliant mate that you actually have a personal example to go on, I honestly couldn't relate myself to anyone famous through the people I know although obviously it isn't just about that i.e. it could be someone you know that has bumped into someone else who knows another person etc etc

Still, I find it a pretty crazy concept.

They do say "it's a small world"



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 02:47 PM
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reply to post by Death_Kron
 


en.wikipedia.org...

Facebook
A Facebook platform application named "Six Degrees" was developed by Karl Bunyan, which calculates the degrees of separation between different people. It had over 5.8 million users, as seen from the group's page. The average separation for all users of the application is 5.73 degrees, whereas the maximum degree of separation is 12. The application has a "Search for Connections" window to input any name of a Facebook user, to which it then shows the chain of connections. In June 2009, Bunyan shut down the application, presumably due to issues with Facebook's caching policy; specifically, the policy prohibited the storing of friend lists for more than 24 hours, which would have made the application inaccurate.[17]. A new version of the application became available at Six Degrees after Karl Bunyan gave permission to a group of developers lead by Todd Chaffee to re-develop the application based on Facebook's revised policy on caching data. The initial version of the application was built at a Facebook Developers Garage London hackathon with Mark Zuckerberg in attendance.

Along the same lines was the group "Six Degrees of Separation - The Experiment", which instructed new members to invite six people on their friend list, and is cited in a report about the theory. The group however, had no way to check if everyone is actually within six degrees of each other, and has since been deleted. However, a newer group with the same name revived the intent of the deleted group.




Other links:
www.SixDegrees.com...

www.SixDegrees.org...



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 02:52 PM
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reply to post by getreadyalready
 


Ah but here is my problem with the theory, I know a lot of different people and a lot of different people are aware of my existance but it doesn't mean I actually know them. Yes, they may have heard about me but they are not people I have personally met.

If the theory accepts this then I would agree it becomes a lot easier to believe although I'd still find it hard to connect me to Tom Cruise for example or some African tribal member, especially in a chain of only 6 people, you get my drift?



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 03:01 PM
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Ex-Wife>Boss>Frat brother and friend to Brad Pitt>endless possibilities from there.

Current Boss>College friend with famous pornstar>endless possibilities from there, LOL!

High School Teammates>NFL PLayers>multiple possibilites from there.

High School Go Kart racer>Nascar Driver Jaime McMurray>you get the idea

Neighbor is a Gubernatorial Candidate>Political connections>redundant

ATS!!!>Met CloudsintheSky>happened to be my brother's neighber>set me up on YouTube>met local guy that runs aquarium in my town>have two new awesome African Sulcata turtle pets as a result!!

Old neighbor and good friend>got job 1000 miles away in my old town>met my old friend>now FBI agent in another state>got case that connected back to this state and a new friend here!

My best friend in Florida goes to Cali for cancer treatment>meets old Armenian buddies with new girlfriend from Missouri>New girlfriend was Miss Missouri finalist and knows my hometown>text message to me>turns out to be my roommates old girlfriend>phone call and now reconnected friendship.

I could go on all day, but the degrees are there, you just have to work your connections.

RECOMMENDED READING:

Little Black Book of Connections

There is an artform to making and maintaining your connections to build your network to be used throughout life.



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 03:04 PM
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reply to post by Death_Kron
 


Well you don't have to know every degree personally, you just have to have that first connection to the person that has close personal relationship with the next level. Each level has to be somewhat intimate, but only the first connection is important to you. The others take care of themselves.

I think this is the secret to being a world class concierge, LOL!



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 03:18 PM
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Originally posted by Death_Kron
If the theory accepts this then I would agree it becomes a lot easier to believe although I'd still find it hard to connect me to Tom Cruise for example or some African tribal member, especially in a chain of only 6 people, you get my drift?
While I'd agree that "knowing" someone (in the non-Biblical sense) is a fairly abstract term, you and I are conversing on ATS (1); I have a friend (2) who was in a film with an actress (3) who was in a movie with Tom Cruise (4).

Actually, once you get into actors and actresses, the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon comes into effect...



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 03:21 PM
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reply to post by JoshNorton
 


Excellent point Josh!!

DeathKron, by "knowing" me, now all of those connections that I listed are just one more degree away from you!! You are 5 degrees from Nelson Mandela!! You are only 2 degrees from some NFL Hall of Famers, Nascar drivers, and legendary college football coaches!! You are about 4 to 5 degrees from Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Sheryl Crow, 1 additional degree from Lance Armstrong.

The possibilities are endless!!

By "knowing" you, I am now that much closer to Queen Elizabeth!!



edit on 21-9-2010 by getreadyalready because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 03:30 PM
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reply to post by JoshNorton
 


Very good post, have a star.



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 03:31 PM
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reply to post by getreadyalready
 


Same as Josh, very good point. I didn't think about it in that respect but it does just goe to show that maybe it really is a small world after all!



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 03:34 PM
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Another thought:

If I had one hundred friends on Facebook 1°,
and they each had one hundred unique friends on Facebook, (100x100 = 10,000) 2°,
and they each had one hundred unique friends on Facebook, (10,000x100 = 1,000,000) 3°,
and they each had one hundred unique friends on Facebook, (1,000,000x100 = 100,000,000) 4°,
and they each had one hundred unique friends on Facebook, (100,000,000x100 = 10,000,000,000) 5°,
and they each had one hundred unique friends on Facebook, (10,000,000,000x100 = 1,000,000,000,000) 6°

So if none of my friends new each other, etc, then six degrees out would be one trillion people!

Wonder if we can scale that backwards? World population is 6,870,100,000, so I only need to know 44 people, and they only need to uniquely know 44 other people, etc, to cover the world in 6 degrees.



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 03:45 PM
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reply to post by JoshNorton
 


What is the "6th root" of 7 Billion?

I don't have a scientific calculator here.

Got it with Excel, it is 43.5 unique friends each!


edit on 21-9-2010 by getreadyalready because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 03:50 PM
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Sorry, but I seem to be on a roll here...

As to your African tribesman example, the important thing is we don't need to necessarily know WHO those connections are, but they probably exist.

It's highly likely that one member of an African tribe has met SOMEONE from outside that tribe. Let's say, for commerce with other tribes, or perhaps for medical attention from a UN volunteer doctor or something. So even if the tribesman himself doesn't have an outside reach, someone he knows probably does. So let's take the example of the UN doctor. Probably not from Africa. Could be from the US or the UK, most likely. And he had to go to school somewhere. Schools are a great demographic for this kind of thing, because of the size & scope of "related" peoples... It's highly likely that you went to school with someone, who went to medschool or served in the military or something with someone who's doing peace work in Africa. You might never know all the specific connections, but if someone looked hard enough, they're there to be found.



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 03:51 PM
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Originally posted by getreadyalready
Got it with Excel, it is 43.5 unique friends each!
With half-friends like you, who needs enemies?



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 03:57 PM
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reply to post by JoshNorton
 


Don't worry mate, I'm finding it very interesting and quite amazing to believe although I'm becoming more convinced after every one of yours and getreadyalready's posts.

So, taking the global consciousness project into the equation, could it may be a possibilty (maybe a long shot) that if we are only 6 links away from anyone in the world that we do in fact share some sort of knowledge between us, even if done so unwittingly?



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 04:00 PM
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Going back to Facebook for a moment, I've got somewhere north of 900 friends there. Granted, most of them are not unique to me... for instance, some of my closer friends, or people I've known socially for a long time, might have 100+ friends in common with me. But there are a few people whom I'm friended with on Facebook, but none of my other friends are. So that would be one of the 43.5 unique relationships we're talking about. Someone I met in another context... someone who isn't part of my daily social scene, but is a tendril out into another world.

In philosophy, this could be seen as Rhizomatic... instead of just an arboreal structure (like a tree with one trunk and many branches and many more leaves), a rhizome can send off shoots and roots from its nodes, and they can go quite some distance and even create their own structures.

So I might be the only guy on my friends list who has friended "X", but "X" has his own set of friends, many of which might be common with each other, but he's probably got a few that are unique among his social circle as well (like me, for instance... I don't know his friends, just as my friends don't know him...). That was one part of the math above that I didn't get quite right, because friendships are two-way relationships, but still the model holds up fairly well.



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 04:01 PM
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reply to post by JoshNorton
 


LOL! Half-friend/double agent! Reminds me of those old double mint commercials with the twins! I may only be half your friend, but I'm twice as much fun for your girlfriend!



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 04:07 PM
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Originally posted by Death_Kron
So, taking the global consciousness project into the equation, could it may be a possibilty (maybe a long shot) that if we are only 6 links away from anyone in the world that we do in fact share some sort of knowledge between us, even if done so unwittingly?
Knowledge becomes a bit more nebulous, but sure, you could make that argument. I believe that knowledge can die out, or be forgotten. Certainly I personally know people who know how to forge a blade, or butcher a chicken, or juggle broken bottles, or read Latin, or build a nuclear device. Knowing them doesn't give me their skills and experiences though, but it puts a potentiality there that I could learn from them if I committed myself to that task.



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 04:09 PM
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reply to post by JoshNorton
 


Speaking of nodes, I don't know a technical term for it, but there are surely some central nodes that make your network infinite and intimate. For example the Nelson Mandela. From there surely anything is possible within 1 or 2 degrees politics, entertainment, world leadership, etc. I could probably connect myself with Clinton or Obama or Jimmy Carter within a few degrees. Once I get to that level then everything is within the grasp of another degree or two.

An offshoot of that theory, my brother wrote a program that looked at randomly generated things like the way sand is scattered around a crab hole, or the way stars are scattered into the sky, or the way nations are accepted into the EU. Then his program went backwards looking for commonality and pattern and gave an array of random generation points. Those points can be evaluated over and over and averaged until you have one particular "seed." From that seed and with the information gathered by the process you can extrapolate outwards and "predict" future outcomes. This was part of his computational science Masters degree work.

If we take a complete random sampling of "networks," and we apply the concept, we can probably find an array of "generation points." Those points would be the target for someone looking to network infinitely. If we decide Mandela, Clinton, Lady GaGa, and A-Jad in Iran are some of those points, then we look at our network and connect to those points within 4 or 5 degrees, it is easy to decide that the whole world is within the grasp of 6 degrees!



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