Social Foraging
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Social Foraging
Dynamics of Social Interaction
Curated by Ashish Umre
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Getting a move on in math - Math through Dance

Getting a move on in math - Math through Dance | Social Foraging | Scoop.it
Marshall Scholar Kirin Sinha is motivating young women to pursue math through dance.

 

MIT senior Kirin Sinha was just 3 years old when she took her first dance class. Unlike other girls who sign up for tap dancing or ballet to channel a gregarious personality, Sinha, by her own account, was painfully shy, and dance was a way for her to come out of her shell.

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Jessica Nguyen's curator insight, January 23, 2014 6:49 AM

This is a prime example of why I want to go into dancing as a side career in the future.

 

Dancing has done for Kirin Sinha exactly what it has done for me. I used to be shy and introverted, and unconfident. Dance taught me how to be an extrovert--to be more open to taking risks, expressing myself, and being more self-confident. Dance is such an important factor of my life for this reason--I would not be where I am today without it. I wouldn't be as successful because I would have been to shy or scared to take the risks that I have that have paid off in my life. This is why I teach dance to little kids at a dance studio--I want to share with the youth this gift, and hope that it helps them as much as it has helped me. And that is why I want to continue to dance, and teach dancing. It's such a healthy outlet for expression, art, and emotion. I want people to feel the emotions that I am intending to convey through movement.

 

This article is such a good example of how dance can help in more than one aspect of a person's life.

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The max-flow problem: First improvement of fundamental algorithm in 10 years

The max-flow problem: First improvement of fundamental algorithm in 10 years | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

The max-flow problem, which is ubiquitous in network analysis, scheduling, and logistics, can now be solved more efficiently than ever.

 

The maximum-flow problem, or max flow, is one of the most basic problems in computer science: First solved during preparations for the Berlin airlift, it’s a component of many logistical problems and a staple of introductory courses on algorithms. For decades it was a prominent research subject, with new algorithms that solved it more and more efficiently coming out once or twice a year. But as the problem became better understood, the pace of innovation slowed. Now, however, MIT researchers, together with colleagues at Yale and the University of Southern California, have demonstrated the first improvement of the max-flow algorithm in 10 years.

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New approach to vertex connectivity could maximize networks’ bandwidth

New approach to vertex connectivity could maximize networks’ bandwidth | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

Computer scientists are constantly searching for ways to squeeze ever more bandwidth from communications networks.

Now a new approach to understanding a basic concept in graph theory, known as “vertex connectivity,” could ultimately lead to communications protocols — the rules that govern how digital messages are exchanged — that coax as much bandwidth as possible from networks.

Graph theory plays a central role in mathematics and computer science, and is used to describe the relationship between different objects. Each graph consists of a number of nodes, or vertices, which represent the objects, and connecting lines between them, known as edges, which signify the relationships between them. A communications network, for example, can be represented as a graph with each node in the network being one vertex, and a connection between two nodes depicted as an edge.

One of the fundamental concepts within graph theory is connectivity, which has two variants: edge connectivity and vertex connectivity. These are numbers that determine how many lines or nodes would have to be removed from a given graph to disconnect it. The lower the edge-connectivity or vertex-connectivity number of a graph, therefore, the easier it is to disconnect, or break apart.

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How the Friendship Paradox Makes Your Friends Better Than You Are

How the Friendship Paradox Makes Your Friends Better Than You Are | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

Back in 1991, the sociologist Scott Feld made a surprising discovery while studying the properties of social networks. Feld calculated the average number of friends that a person in the network has and compared this to the average number of friends that these friends had.

 

Against all expectations it turned out that the second number is always bigger than the first. Or in other words, your friends have more friends than you do.

 

Researchers have since observed the so-called friendship paradox in a wide variety of situations. On Facebook, your friends will have more friends than you have. On Twitter, your followers will have more followers than you do. And in real life, your sexual partners will have had more partners than you’ve had. At least, on average.

 

Network scientists have long known that this paradoxical effect is the result of the topology of networks—how they are connected together. That’s why similar networks share the same paradoxical properties.

 

But are your friends also happier than you are, or richer, or just better? That’s not so clear because happiness and wealth are not directly represented in the topology of a friendship network. So an interesting question is how far the paradox will go.

 

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Evolutionary Significance of the Role of Family Units in a Broader Social System

Evolutionary Significance of the Role of Family Units in a Broader Social System | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

Indirect benefits to individual fitness in social species can be influenced by a variety of behavioral factors. Behaviors which support the fitness of kin provide indirect benefits in the form of evolutionary success of relatives. Further, individuals may obtain additional indirect benefits via participation in a well-organized social environment. Building on previous models of selfishly-motivated self-organizing societies, we explore the evolutionary trade-off between inclusion and maintenance of family groups and the ability of a population to sustain a well-organized social structure. Our results demonstrate that the interactions between Hamiltonian and organizationally-based indirect benefits to individual fitness interact to favor certain types of social affiliation traits. Conversely, we show how particular types of social affiliation dynamics may provide selective pressures to limit the size of behaviorally-defined familial groups. We present the first studies of the evolution of social complexity differentiating affiliation behavior between kin and non-kin.

 

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The 'smart life': How connected cars, clothes and homes could fry your brain

The 'smart life': How connected cars, clothes and homes could fry your brain | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

Welcome to the "smart life." Brain cells, beware.

 

It's an entirely wired existence where your Pebble smart watch is connected to your smartphone, which communicates with Google Glass, which can send commands to your Internet-enabled refrigerator and robotic vacuum — all from the comfort of your iOS-equipped car. Sound like a bit much?

 

Sure, that vision of the future might seem like an amalgam of over-hyped tech trends. But it's probably coming sooner than most people think.

Take "smart homes," connected houses filled with light bulbs, security systems, appliances and TVs that talk to each other and their owner, either through a smartphone or directly through voice and gesture commands. They aren't a "Jetsons" fantasy; in fact, they could be relatively common in five years, said Dr. Sanjay Sarma, director of digital learning at MIT. 

 

And while "wearables" — including wearable gadgets like Google Glass, smart watches, fitness trackers and even sensor-equipped socks — aren't the norm right now, Juniper Research predicts that the size of the market will explode from $1.4 billion in 2013 to $19 billion in 2018.

 

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Evidence of Lévy walk foraging patterns in human hunter–gatherers

Significance

Lévy walks are a random walk search strategy used by a wide variety of organisms when searching for heterogeneously distributed food. This type of search involves mostly short move steps (defined as the distance traveled before pausing or changing direction) combined with rarer longer move steps. Here, we show that the Hadza, hunter–gatherers from northern Tanzania, perform Lévy walks when foraging for a wide variety of food items, suggesting that Lévy walks are an important movement pattern for the most cognitively complex foragers on Earth. Our results suggest that scale-invariant, superdiffusive movement profiles are a fundamental feature of human landscape use, regardless of the physical or cultural environment, and may have played an important role in the evolution of human mobility.

Abstract

When searching for food, many organisms adopt a superdiffusive, scale-free movement pattern called a Lévy walk, which is considered optimal when foraging for heterogeneously located resources with little prior knowledge of distribution patterns [Viswanathan GM, da Luz MGE, Raposo EP, Stanley HE (2011) The Physics of Foraging: An Introduction to Random Searches and Biological Encounters]. Although memory of food locations and higher cognition may limit the benefits of random walk strategies, no studies to date have fully explored search patterns in human foraging. Here, we show that human hunter–gatherers, the Hadza of northern Tanzania, perform Lévy walks in nearly one-half of all foraging bouts. Lévy walks occur when searching for a wide variety of foods from animal prey to underground tubers, suggesting that, even in the most cognitively complex forager on Earth, such patterns are essential to understanding elementary foraging mechanisms. This movement pattern may be fundamental to how humans experience and interact with the world across a wide range of ecological contexts, and it may be adaptive to food distribution patterns on the landscape, which previous studies suggested for organisms with more limited cognition. Additionally, Lévy walks may have become common early in our genus when hunting and gathering arose as a major foraging strategy, playing an important role in the evolution of human mobility.

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Timing of cyber conflict

Significance

The world’s economy and international security have come to depend upon a secure Internet. International rivalries and conflicts have already provided challenges to Internet security in the form of espionage, sabotage, and denial of service. New vulnerabilities in computer systems are constantly being discovered. When an individual, group, or nation has access to means of exploiting such vulnerabilities in a rival’s computer systems, it faces a decision of whether to exploit its capacity immediately or wait for a more propitious time. This paper introduces a simple mathematical model applied to four case studies to promote the understanding of the new domain of cyber conflict.

Abstract

Nations are accumulating cyber resources in the form of stockpiles of zero-day exploits as well as other novel methods of engaging in future cyber conflict against selected targets. This paper analyzes the optimal timing for the use of such cyber resources. A simple mathematical model is offered to clarify how the timing of such a choice can depend on the stakes involved in the present situation, as well as the characteristics of the resource for exploitation. The model deals with the question of when the resource should be used given that its use today may well prevent it from being available for use later. The analysis provides concepts, theory, applications, and distinctions to promote the understanding strategy aspects of cyber conflict. Case studies include the Stuxnet attack on Iran’s nuclear program, the Iranian cyber attack on the energy firm Saudi Aramco, the persistent cyber espionage carried out by the Chinese military, and an analogous case of economic coercion by China in a dispute with Japan. The effects of the rapidly expanding market for zero-day exploits are also analyzed. The goal of the paper is to promote the understanding of this domain of cyber conflict to mitigate the harm it can do, and harness the capabilities it can provide.

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4th Student Conference on Complexity Science

4th Student Conference on Complexity Science | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

The Student Conference on Complexity Science (SCCS) is the largest UK conference for early-career researchers working under the interdisciplinary framework of Complex Systems, with a particular focus on computational modelling, simulation and network analysis. Since 2010, this conference series has brought together PhD students and early career researchers from both the UK and overseas, whose interests span areas as diverse as quantum physics, ecological food webs or the economics of happiness. This interdisciplinary nature of the conference is reflected by the diversity of keynote speakers as well as practical, hands-on workshops.


The 4th Student Conference on Complexity Science will be held 19-22 August 2014 at the University of Sussex, Brighton, UK.

http://sccs2014.soton.ac.uk


Via Complexity Digest
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The Impact of Mathematical Proficiency on the Number-Space Association

The Impact of Mathematical Proficiency on the Number-Space Association | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

A specific instance of the association between numerical and spatial representations is the SNARC (Spatial Numerical Association of Response Codes) effect. The SNARC effect describes the finding that during binary classification of numbers participants are faster to respond to small/large numbers with the left/right hand respectively. Even though it has been frequently replicated, important inter-individual variability has also been reported. Mathematical proficiency is an obvious candidate source for inter-individual variability in numerical judgments, but studies investigating its influence on the SNARC effect remain scarce. The present experiment included a total of 95 University students, divided into three groups differing significantly in their mathematical proficiency levels. Using group analyses, it appeared that the three groups differed significantly in the strength of their number-space associations in a parity judgment task. This result was further confirmed on an individual level, with higher levels in arithmetic leading to relatively weaker SNARC effects. To explain this negative relationship we propose accounts based on differences in access to qualitatively different numerical representations and also consider more domain general factors, with a focus on inhibition capacities.

 

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Visualizing numbers in the mind's eye: The role of visuo-spatial processes in numerical abilities

Visualizing numbers in the mind's eye: The role of visuo-spatial processes in numerical abilities | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

In the study of numerical and arithmetical abilities, there is compelling evidence demonstrating that number and space representations are connected to one another. Historically the first source of support came more than a century ago, when Galton's investigations on mental imagery suggested that the internal representation of numbers may evoke a stable, linear space. In the past few decades, empirical evidence lent further support to the hypothesis that numerical representation is spatially coded into a non-verbal ‘mental number line’, which in turn lead to considering this representation as the core of number meaning. Visuo-spatial processing is intuitively involved in various aspects of number processing and calculation: For instance, the meaning of a digit in a multi-digit number is coded following spatial information, given its association to its relative position within the number; similarly, to solve a complex written multiplication one has to know the correct location of the intermediate results. In this review behavioral, neuropsychological, and neuroimaging data concerning the close relationship between numerical abilities and visuo-spatial processes are considered.

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After Being Challenged by a Video Game Problem, Sleep Increases the Chance to Solve It

After Being Challenged by a Video Game Problem, Sleep Increases the Chance to Solve It | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

In the past years many studies have demonstrated the role of sleep on memory consolidation. It is known that sleeping after learning a declarative or non-declarative task, is better than remaining awake. Furthermore, there are reports of a possible role for dreams in consolidation of declarative memories. Other studies have reported the effect of naps on memory consolidation. With similar protocols, another set of studies indicated that sleep has a role in creativity and problem-solving. Here we hypothesised that sleep can increase the likelihood of solving problems. After struggling to solve a video game problem, subjects who took a nap (n = 14) were almost twice as likely to solve it when compared to the wake control group (n = 15). It is interesting to note that, in the nap group 9 out 14 subjects engaged in slow-wave sleep (SWS) and all solved the problem. Surprisingly, we did not find a significant involvement of Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep in this task. Slow-wave sleep is believed to be crucial for the transfer of memory-related information to the neocortex and implement intentions. Sleep can benefit problem-solving through the generalisation of newly encoded information and abstraction of the gist. In conclusion, our results indicate that sleep, even a nap, can potentiate the solution of problems that involve logical reasoning. Thus, sleep's function seems to go beyond memory consolidation to include managing of everyday-life events.

 

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Confidence and the Stock Market: An Agent-Based Approach

Confidence and the Stock Market: An Agent-Based Approach | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

Using a behavioral finance approach we study the impact of behavioral bias. We construct an artificial market consisting of fundamentalists and chartists to model the decision-making process of various agents. The agents differ in their strategies for evaluating stock prices, and exhibit differing memory lengths and confidence levels. When we increase the heterogeneity of the strategies used by the agents, in particular the memory lengths, we observe excess volatility and kurtosis, in agreement with real market fluctuations—indicating that agents in real-world financial markets exhibit widely differing memory lengths. We incorporate the behavioral traits of adaptive confidence and observe a positive correlation between average confidence and return rate, indicating that market sentiment is an important driver in price fluctuations. The introduction of market confidence increases price volatility, reflecting the negative effect of irrationality in market behavior.

 

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Unraveling the Matrix

Unraveling the Matrix | Social Foraging | Scoop.it
A new way of analyzing grids of numbers known as matrices could improve signal-processing applications and data-compression schemes.

 

Among the most common tools in electrical engineering and computer science are rectangular grids of numbers known as matrices. The numbers in a matrix can represent data: The rows, for instance, could represent temperature, air pressure and humidity, and the columns could represent different locations where those three measurements were taken. But matrices can also represent mathematical equations. If the expressions t + 2p + 3h and 4t + 5p + 6h described two different mathematical operations involving temperature, pressure and humidity measurements, they could be represented as a matrix with two rows, [1 2 3] and [4 5 6]. Multiplying the two matrices together means performing both mathematical operations on every column of the data matrix and entering the results in a new matrix. In many time-sensitive engineering applications, multiplying matrices can give quick but good approximations of much more complicated calculations.

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Short algorithm, long-range consequences

Short algorithm, long-range consequences | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

In the last decade, theoretical computer science has seen remarkable progress on the problem of solving graph Laplacians — the esoteric name for a calculation with hordes of familiar applications in scheduling, image processing, online product recommendation, network analysis, and scientific computing, to name just a few. Only in 2004 did researchers first propose an algorithm that solved graph Laplacians in “nearly linear time,” meaning that the algorithm’s running time didn’t increase exponentially with the size of the problem.

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Wikipedia's Secret Multilingual Workforce

Wikipedia's Secret Multilingual Workforce | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

Wikipedia aims to provide free online access to all human knowledge. And a cursory look at its vital statistics appear to indicate that it’s well on its way to achieving that. The organisation has 77,000 active contributors working on over 22 million articles in 285 languages. All this attracts some 500 million unique visitors a month.

 

And yet a look beyond these figures reveals a subtle but important problem: there is surprisingly little overlap between the content in different language editions. No one edition contains all the information found in other language editions. And the largest language edition, English, contains only 51 per cent of the articles in the second largest edition, German.  

 

This problem is known as self-focus bias and it places a significant limit on the access to knowledge that Wikipedia provides. It means that Wikipedia not only offers people access to a mere fraction of human knowledge but to a mere fraction of its own articles.

 

There are a group of people who could change this, says Scott Hale at the University of Oxford in the UK. He believes that people who edit Wikipedia in more than one language are the key. “Such multilingual users may serve an important function in diffusing information across different language editions of the project,” he says.

 

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Our Brains Have a Map for Numbers

Our Brains Have a Map for Numbers | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

“Come on. Get out of the express checkout lane! That’s way more than twelve items, lady.”

 

Without having to count, you can make a good guess at how many purchases the shopper in front of you is making. She may think she’s pulling a fast one, but thanks to the brain’s refined sense for quantity, she’s not fooling anyone. This ability to perceive numerosity – or number of items – does more than help prevent express lane fraud; it also builds the foundation for our arithmetic skills, the economic system and our concept of value.

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More than apples and oranges - Detecting cancer with a fruit fly's antenna

More than apples and oranges - Detecting cancer with a fruit fly's antenna | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

Cancer cells and non-cancer cells differ in their metabolism and they emit distinct volatile compound profiles, allowing to recognise cancer cells by their scent. Insect odorant receptors are excellent chemosensors with high sensitivity and a broad receptive range unmatched by current gas sensors. We thus investigated the potential of utilising the fruit fly's olfactory system to detect cancer cells. Using in vivo calcium imaging, we recorded an array of olfactory receptor neurons on the fruit fly's antenna. We performed multidimensional analysis of antenna responses, finding that cell volatiles from different cell types lead to characteristic response vectors. The distances between these response vectors are conserved across flies and can be used to discriminate healthy mammary epithelial cells from different types of breast cancer cells. This may expand the repertoire of clinical diagnostics, and it is the first step towards electronic noses equipped with biological sensors, integrating artificial and biological olfaction.

 

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Democratic decisions establish stable authorities that overcome the paradox of second-order punishment

Humans usually punish free riders but refuse to sanction those who cooperate but do not punish. However, such second-order punishment is essential to maintain cooperation. The central authorities established in modern societies punish both free riders and tax evaders. This is a paradox: would individuals who do not engage in second-order punishment strive for an authority that does? We address this puzzle with a mathematical model and an economic experiment. When individuals can choose between authorities by migrating between different communities, we find a costly bias against second-order punishment. When subjects use a majority vote instead, they vote for an authority with second-order punishment. These findings also suggest that other pressing social dilemmas could be solved by democratic voting.

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Evolution of microbial markets

Biological market theory has been used successfully to explain cooperative behavior in many animal species. Microbes also engage in cooperative behaviors, both with hosts and other microbes, that can be described in economic terms. However, a market approach is not traditionally used to analyze these interactions. Here, we extend the biological market framework to ask whether this theory is of use to evolutionary biologists studying microbes. We consider six economic strategies used by microbes to optimize their success in markets. We argue that an economic market framework is a useful tool to generate specific and interesting predictions about microbial interactions, including the evolution of partner discrimination, hoarding strategies, specialized versus diversified mutualistic services, and the role of spatial structures, such as flocks and consortia. There is untapped potential for studying the evolutionary dynamics of microbial systems. Market theory can help structure this potential by characterizing strategic investment of microbes across a diversity of conditions.

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Materazzi effect and the strategic use of anger in competitive interactions

Emotions play a critical role in social interactions and decision-making. We present evidence that individuals understand the behavioral effects of emotions, particularly anger, and use them strategically in interactions. In our study, individuals competed on a task, and one of them was given the opportunity to anger the other. The first task was strength-based, where we expected anger to improve performance. Other participants competed on a mental task in which we expected anger to impair performance—angering one’s opponent here may benefit the offender. Anger affected behavior in line with our predictions. Importantly, individuals seemed to anticipate this reaction and took the strategic opportunity to anger their counterpart significantly more in the mental task than in the strength task.

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Parasites Affect Food Web Structure Primarily through Increased Diversity and Complexity

Parasites Affect Food Web Structure Primarily through Increased Diversity and Complexity | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

Comparative research on food web structure has revealed generalities in trophic organization, produced simple models, and allowed assessment of robustness to species loss. These studies have mostly focused on free-living species. Recent research has suggested that inclusion of parasites alters structure. We assess whether such changes in network structure result from unique roles and traits of parasites or from changes to diversity and complexity. We analyzed seven highly resolved food webs that include metazoan parasite data. Our analyses show that adding parasites usually increases link density and connectance (simple measures of complexity), particularly when including concomitant links (links from predators to parasites of their prey). However, we clarify prior claims that parasites “dominate” food web links. Although parasites can be involved in a majority of links, in most cases classic predation links outnumber classic parasitism links. Regarding network structure, observed changes in degree distributions, 14 commonly studied metrics, and link probabilities are consistent with scale-dependent changes in structure associated with changes in diversity and complexity. Parasite and free-living species thus have similar effects on these aspects of structure. However, two changes point to unique roles of parasites. First, adding parasites and concomitant links strongly alters the frequency of most motifs of interactions among three taxa, reflecting parasites' roles as resources for predators of their hosts, driven by trophic intimacy with their hosts. Second, compared to free-living consumers, many parasites' feeding niches appear broader and less contiguous, which may reflect complex life cycles and small body sizes. This study provides new insights about generic versus unique impacts of parasites on food web structure, extends the generality of food web theory, gives a more rigorous framework for assessing the impact of any species on trophic organization, identifies limitations of current food web models, and provides direction for future structural and dynamical models.

 

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The Heterogeneous Nature of Number–Space Interactions

It is generally accepted that the mental representation of numerical magnitude consists of a spatial “mental number line” (MNL) with smaller quantities on the left and larger quantities on the right. However, the amount of dissociations between tasks that were believed to tap onto this representational medium is accumulating, questioning the universality of this model. The aim of the present study was to unravel the functional relationship between the different tasks and effects that are typically used as evidence for the MNL. For this purpose, a group of right brain damaged patients (with and without neglect) and healthy controls were subjected to physical line bisection, number interval bisection, parity judgment, and magnitude comparison. Using principal component analysis, different orthogonal components were extracted. We discuss how this component structure captures the dissociations reported in the literature and how it can be considered as a first step toward a new unitary framework for understanding the relation between numbers and space.

 

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Does Sympathy Motivate Prosocial Behaviour in Great Apes?

Does Sympathy Motivate Prosocial Behaviour in Great Apes? | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

Prosocial behaviours such as helping, comforting, or sharing are central to human social life. Because they emerge early in ontogeny, it has been proposed that humans are prosocial by nature and that from early on empathy and sympathy motivate such behaviours. The emerging question is whether humans share these abilities to feel with and for someone with our closest relatives, the great apes. Although several studies demonstrated that great apes help others, little is known about their underlying motivations. This study addresses this issue and investigates whether four species of great apes (Pongo pygmaeus, Gorilla gorilla, Pan troglodytes, Pan paniscus) help a conspecific more after observing the conspecific being harmed (a human experimenter steals the conspecific’s food) compared to a condition where no harming occurred. Results showed that in regard to the occurrence of prosocial behaviours, only orangutans, but not the African great apes, help others when help is needed, contrasting prior findings on chimpanzees. However, with the exception of one population of orangutans that helped significantly more after a conspecific was harmed than when no harm occurred, prosocial behaviour in great apes was not motivated by concern for others.

 

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Two Types of Well Followed Users in the Followership Networks of Twitter

Two Types of Well Followed Users in the Followership Networks of Twitter | Social Foraging | Scoop.it

In the Twitter blogosphere, the number of followers is probably the most basic and succinct quantity for measuring popularity of users. However, the number of followers can be manipulated in various ways; we can even buy follows. Therefore, alternative popularity measures for Twitter users on the basis of, for example, users' tweets and retweets, have been developed. In the present work, we take a purely network approach to this fundamental question. First, we find that two relatively distinct types of users possessing a large number of followers exist, in particular for Japanese, Russian, and Korean users among the seven language groups that we examined. A first type of user follows a small number of other users. A second type of user follows approximately the same number of other users as the number of follows that the user receives. Then, we compare local (i.e., egocentric) followership networks around the two types of users with many followers. We show that the second type, which is presumably uninfluential users despite its large number of followers, is characterized by high link reciprocity, a large number of friends (i.e., those whom a user follows) for the followers, followers' high link reciprocity, large clustering coefficient, large fraction of the second type of users among the followers, and a small PageRank. Our network-based results support that the number of followers used alone is a misleading measure of user's popularity. We propose that the number of friends, which is simple to measure, also helps us to assess the popularity of Twitter users.

 

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Paper: http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0084265

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