The Department of Computer Science at the University of Cyprus cordially invites you to the Seminar entitled:
Evolution of Online Social Networks and the Ecology of the Digital World
Speaker: Mr. Kaj Kolja Kleineberg
The overwhelming success of Web 2.0, within which online social networks are key actors, has induced a paradigm shift in the nature of human interactions. The user-driven character of Web 2.0 services has allowed researchers to quantify large-scale social patterns for the first time. However, the mechanisms that determine the fate of networks at the system level are still poorly understood. For instance, the simultaneous existence of multiple digital services naturally raises questions concerning which conditions these services can coexist under. Analogously to the case of population dynamics, the digital world forms a complex ecosystem of interacting networks. The fitness of each network depends on its capacity to attract and maintain users' attention, which constitutes a limited resource. Here, we introduce an ecological theory of the digital world which exhibits stable coexistence of several networks as well as the dominance of an individual one, in contrast to the competitive exclusion principle. Interestingly, our theory also predicts that the most probable outcome is the coexistence of a moderate number of services, in agreement with empirical observations. In addition, we show how such general theory enriched with empirical data can provide new insights into the competition between Facebook and local networks.
Kaj Kolja graduated with academic distinction in theoretical Physics at the University of Münster, Germany, in summer 2012. His research within the framework of his diploma thesis was based on an innovative approach to complex systems with application to the problem of two-dimensional turbulence. After a short time of working as a consultant for finance and risk management, he joined the iSocial project. His current research within the field of complex networks is focused on understanding the fundamental mechanisms of the evolution and interaction of Online Social Networks.
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