Determine the social algorithm

The social word is in boom right now, and we have social networks, social programs, social bookmarks and now a social algorithm. Social networks are activity, and social software is the tools that make social networks possible, but what is a social algorithm?

Next tries to define a social algorithm.

Social networks.

Let's take a look at examples. Popular social networking sites include Flickr, YouTube, MySpace, Friendster, Wikipedia, Facebook,, and the Second World virtual game world. It is a bookmark and bookmarking of social network activities. The purpose of the network is to enable people to meet, collaborate or just share something (pictures, music, movies, information, etc.).

Social programs.

Social programs are tools that enable people to communicate. These range from email, mailing lists, RSS, IRC, instant messaging, and Napster like P2P, blogging, wiki, AJAX, Web 2, etc. Its characteristics are that networks must be interactive and bottom-up (users provide content). These programs are used to be called group-ware. Some of these programs are very old, but others like blogs are newer. Wikis have been around since Ward Cunningham, the father of wikis, started them, but after that they were considered geeks only, and were only widely accepted in the past two years. Some programs have been documented using wikis, and companies and educational institutions have started to benefit from them.


So what is the social algorithm? The algorithm is like a recipe or a computer program with step-by-step instructions for carrying out an action. Algorithms are mentioned in the fake code, easy for people to understand, and are more abstract than computer programs. Programs are said to implement some algorithms, since they are machine-level translation of pseudo-code.

Although most algorithms are numerical, they do not need, as shown in recipes, the logical uniformity algorithm, string matching, face recognition, etc.

Based agent.

Social algorithms differ from general algorithms in that they involve factors, and the algorithm is the result of the interaction of factors. An example of this, with ant ants as agents, is the ant colony algorithm, which is used to solve some problems, such as the shortest path or the seller's problem. Social algorithms can be used to solve distributed problems as an ant colony algorithm, but they do not have to be.

Google's pagerank algorithm is said to be the deciding factor in Google's winning the web battle. The page rank algorithm ranks websites using several criteria, including the number of incoming links, and each has a weight that is the page rank of the reference site (the algorithm is frequent and normal in real time).

To get an idea of ​​the algorithm, here's a description:

The original paging algorithm has been described by Lawrence Page and Sergey Brin in many publications.

Is given by

PR (A) = (1-d) + d (PR (T1) / C (T1) + … + PR (Tn) / C (Tn))

PR (A) is the PageRank of Page A,
PR (Ti) is the PageRank of the Ti pages that link to Page A,
C (Ti) is the number of links issued on the page Ti and
d Damping factor can be adjusted between 0 and 1.

Since PageRank determines the ranking of sites in a search, it affects many things, and in the last analysis, many people get income from the sites. Thus, people, who are agents here, are trying to adjust their site parameters to increase their ranks. This is known as SEO: Search Engine Optimization.

This is an example where the algorithm provides rules for the social network, thereby modifying the behavior or behavior of agents. Algorithm abuse has occurred, in one case, someone creates web sites based on links (only roughly) without content, but manages to get a high PageRank. Perhaps such anomalies will be dealt with, because the page rank algorithm is also evolving.

Internet auctions and reverse auctions like those provided by EBay, are also algorithms that provide the rules of the game, where we are the players. is a social bookmarking site, the original suggestion is given one number, and people can search again if they want the suggestion, or uncheck it if they don't. Diggs number referring to popular motion. This system will prefer groups of people who collaborate in the search for other suggestions.

We see that social algorithms have vulnerabilities, and are often exploited by specific people. Hence the need to improve social algorithms.

Netflix is ​​a popular case, they've offered $ 1 million to anyone who can improve the accuracy of the current algorithm by 10%.

Non-human and players.

Returning to the definition of the social algorithm as a multi-factor algorithm, where agents are people, we feel that this definition should be extended to include cases where people are replaced by animals or alternative programs. I'm going to think of a simulation of a Digg algorithm, or a simulation of trading in the market using smart agents as social algorithms. So is the algorithm of the ant colony, which replaces animals for people. Similar swarms, swarms, etc.

Cellular automation is a boundary state, it is based on all factors, but it is often used to simulate physical and chemical processes. If its use was to mimic human activity, it would be a social algorithm.

The algorithm of evolution as the abstraction of the Darwinian process is also a social algorithm.
Genetic algorithms and their various forms are listed here.

Evolutionary theory game.

The field of social algorithms overlaps with evolutionary game theory. Game theory studies strategies used by agents, for example in commerce, auctions, marketing, voting, etc. Prisoner's Dilemma sets a game for two prisoners, but can be repeated and played in a society, which then becomes the social algorithm.

If you've played before Second Life, you know how complex social algorithms can be. In the virtual world, whole life, including economics, relationships, and property, is defined by algorithms.


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