The mindset of innovation is characterized by a deliberate attempt to question what you know and explore what you don’t. In large organizations this manifests itself in a very simple equation;Innovation = reducing errors + increasing insights. It is this dilemma that plagues most organizations..
In recent years, political parties have adopted Online Delegative Democracy platforms such as LiquidFeedback to organise themselves and their political agendas via a grassroots approach. A common objection against the use of these platforms is the delegation system, where a user can delegate his vote to another user, giving rise to so-called super-voters, i.e. powerful users who receive many delegations. It has been asserted in the past that the presence of these super-voters undermines the democratic process, and therefore delegative democracy should be avoided. In this paper, we look at the emergence of super-voters in the largest delegative online democracy platform worldwide, operated by Germany's Pirate Party. We investigate the distribution of power within the party systematically, study whether super-voters exist, and explore the influence they have on the outcome of votings conducted online. While we find that the theoretical power of super-voters is indeed high, we also observe that they use their power wisely. Super-voters do not fully act on their power to change the outcome of votes, but they vote in favour of proposals with the majority of voters in many cases thereby exhibiting a stabilising effect on the system. We use these findings to present a novel class of power indices that considers observed voting biases and gives significantly better predictions than state-of-the-art measures.
Functional networks, i.e. networks representing dynamic relationships between the components of a complex system, have been instrumental for our understanding of, among others, the human brain. Due to limited data availability, the multi-layer nature of numerous functional networks has hitherto been neglected, and nodes are endowed with a single type of links even when multiple relationships coexist at different physical levels. A relevant problem is the assessment of the benefits yielded by studying a multi-layer functional network, against the simplicity guaranteed by the reconstruction and use of the corresponding single layer projection. Here, I tackle this issue by using as a test case, the functional network representing the dynamics of delay propagation through European airports. Neglecting the multi-layer structure of a functional network has dramatic consequences on our understanding of the underlying system, a fact to be taken into account when a projection is the only available information.
Can we neglect the multi-layer structure of functional networks? Massimiliano Zanin
Members of policy group Coin Center, law firm Perkins Coie as well as Harvard and MIT have released a new working paper that aims to illuminate legal questions surrounding the non-financial use of the bitcoin blockchain.
The publication is the result of a workshop held 15th to 18th January at which decentralised crowdfunding startup Swarm that sought to address challenges facing the part of the industry often referred to as the crypto 2.0 sector.
Rob Knight is a pioneer in studying human microbes, the community of tiny single-cell organisms living inside our bodies that have a huge — and largely unexplored — role in our health. “The three pounds of microbes that you carry around with you might be more important than every single gene you carry around in your genome,” he says. Find out why.
"Imagine you are a slave. You belong to a farmer who owns a tobacco plantation on the eastern shore of Maryland. Six long days a week you tend his field. But not for much longer . . .What will you do? Make your choices well as you embark on your journey to freedom.
To play The Underground Railroad: Journey to Freedom, you must download and install the free Sandstone Player Software on your computer. Sandstone is required to support the 3-D style interaction in the game. Click here to find instructions for downloading Sandstone on a Mac or PC.The game is also available as both an iOS and an android app."
The quality of web sources has been traditionally evaluated using exogenous signals such as the hyperlink structure of the graph. We propose a new approach that relies on endogenous signals, namely, the correctness of factual information provided by the source. A source that has few false facts is considered to be trustworthy. The facts are automatically extracted from each source by information extraction methods commonly used to construct knowledge bases. We propose a way to distinguish errors made in the extraction process from factual errors in the web source per se, by using joint inference in a novel multi-layer probabilistic model. We call the trustworthiness score we computed Knowledge-Based Trust (KBT). On synthetic data, we show that our method can reliably compute the true trustworthiness levels of the sources. We then apply it to a database of 2.8B facts extracted from the web, and thereby estimate the trustworthiness of 119M webpages. Manual evaluation of a subset of the results confirms the effectiveness of the method.
Knowledge-Based Trust: Estimating the Trustworthiness of Web Sources Xin Luna Dong, Evgeniy Gabrilovich, Kevin Murphy, Van Dang, Wilko Horn, Camillo Lugaresi, Shaohua Sun, Wei Zhang
Filed Under: Capitalism, Competition, Free Markets, Human Action, Innovation, Market Process “Every device employed to bolster individual freedom must have as its chief purpose the impairment of the absoluteness of power.” —…
This paper reviews some recent work in the relationship between caring behavior among humans, an evolutionary adaptation necessary for survival of the species, and our moral sense of right and wrong. The investigation presents some of our current understandings; the question is part of ongoing work in neuroscience and evolutionary biology. Does caring behavior necessarily imply a moral sensibility?
We have a limited understanding of the factors that make people influential and topics popular in social media. Are users who comment on a variety of matters more likely to achieve high influence than those who stay focused? Do general subjects tend to be more popular than specific ones? Questions like these demand a way to detect the topics hidden behind messages associated with an individual or a keyword, and a gauge of similarity among these topics. Here we develop such an approach to identi
If organizations are going thrive in turbulent times, they must surrender many of their most cherished assumptions and start leveraging the power of collaborative knowledge. But this won't be easy as most continue to believe in the same top-down…
Complex networks such as the Internet, transportation networks, power grids, biological neural networks, and scientific cooperation networks of all kinds provide challenges for future technological development.
• The first systematic presentation of dynamical evolving networks, with many up-to-date applications and homework projects to enhance study • Complex networks are becoming an increasingly important area of research • Presented in a logical, constructive style, from basic through to complex, examining algorithms, through to construct networks and research challenges of the future
From humans to social insects and bacteria, decision-making is often influenced by some form of collective signaling, be it quorum, information exchange, pledges or announcements. Here we investigate how such signaling systems evolve when collective action entails a public good, and how meanings co-evolve with individual choices, given Nature’s most prevalent states. We find a rich scenario, showing how natural selection is able to evolve a costly quorum signaling system that allows individuals to coordinate their action so as to provide the appropriate response to different states of Nature. We show that signaling robustly and selectively promotes cooperative collective action when coordinated action is most needed. In light of our results, and despite the complexity that collective action relying on quorum signaling may entail, it is not so surprising how signaling is a ubiquitous property of the living world.
There are six ways teams can make decisions. Some people believe that in a collaborative environment, consensus is the best. But that's a big mistake. Pushing for consensus when it's not needed actually makes collaboration more difficult. The best…
Antony van Leeuwenhoek wrote to the Royal Society of London in a letter dated September 17, 1683, describing “very little animalcules, very prettily a-moving,” which he had seen under a microscope in plaque scraped from his teeth. For more than three centuries after van Leeuwenhoek's observation, the human “microbiome”—the 100 trillion or so microbes that live in various nooks and crannies of the human body—remained largely unstudied, mainly because it is not so easy to extract and culture them in a laboratory. A decade ago the advent of sequencing technologies finally opened up this microbiological frontier. The Human Microbiome Project reference database, established in 2012, revealed in unprecedented detail the diverse microbial community that inhabits our bodies.
The Microbes Within David Grogan Nature 518, S2 (26 February 2015)
Social media have quickly become a prevalent channel to access information, spread ideas, and influence opinions. However, it has been suggested that social and algorithmic filtering may cause exposure to less diverse points of view, and even foster polarization and misinformation. Here we explore and validate this hypothesis quantitatively for the first time, at the collective and individual levels, by mining three massive datasets of web traffic, search logs, and Twitter posts. Our analysis shows that collectively, people access information from a significantly narrower spectrum of sources through social media and email, compared to search. The significance of this finding for individual exposure is revealed by investigating the relationship between the diversity of information sources experienced by users at the collective and individual level. There is a strong correlation between collective and individual diversity, supporting the notion that when we use social media we find ourselves inside "social bubbles". Our results could lead to a deeper understanding of how technology biases our exposure to new information.
Measuring Online Social Bubbles Dimitar Nikolov, Diego F. M. Oliveira, Alessandro Flammini, Filippo Menczer
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