Six degrees of separation in instant messaging
March 24th, 2008

According to Nature in ‘Six degrees of messaging,’ computer scientists at Microsoft Research Redmond lab have logged a full month of instant messengers using — logically — Microsoft Messenger. ‘The compressed dataset occupies 4.5 terabytes, composed from 1 billion conversations per day (150 gigabytes) over one month of logging,” according to the researchers. The dataset which was collected in June 2006 contains summaries of 30 billion conversations among 240 million people. And they were very surprised to find that the average number of jumps to get from one random user to another was 6.6.” This is very close to the old ‘six degrees of separation’ idea which states that everyone on Earth is six ‘steps’ away from anyone else. But read more…

Links: ZDNet, Primidi

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