Eve Weinberg

Reading Response – Week 1

  1. Why Google went offline today:
    This article was great because it raised so many questions:

    1. is Google’s public DNS sever, what does that mean?
    2. what happens when you type “$ dig +trace google.com” into your shell?
    3. what is the ‘network layer’ ? that he said he started to look into? he “pinged” an IP to do this.
    4. I’d like to read up on AS (Autonomous System)
    5. I’d like to know more about BGP
    6. Was Pakistan’s BGP slowly replacing the link for Youtube.com all over the WWW?
  2. How Networks Transforms Government 

    This was an interesting article about the flow of information in international politics. Anne Marie Slaughter argued (in 2004!) that governments need to be more colalborative, flexible, and function similarly to the internet on a basis or trust.  Government has unused potential that can be unlocked through more efficient networking. One example was when India and Pakistan almost came to nuclear blows in 1999, U.S. General Anthony Zinni was able to reach out to his contacts in both places.It also mentions the new workforce generation that does not want to hold one job for 30 years, so this will inevitable help networks. Governments just need to supply the framework to allow people to switch departments. One structural solution is, “I think there should be a clear network of government officials as a central spine of this larger complex of actors — and then it’s fine to invite corporate and NGO networks to engage with one another and with the government officials. But keep the policymaking lines clear so we know whom voters can hold to account.” Things will only get more complicated, so it’s important to build a strong infrastructure set up for fluidity.

  3. Linked BookThis book is a really fun read. Chapters 1-4 have some great insight into the study of networks. There are many different ways to identify the type of network you have. There is a Poisson distribution, in which most nodes have the same number of links as the average node. There is talk of random graph theory, which I need to read up on. Milgram’s experiment was an interesting manual way of collecting data, asking people to send postcards until they returned to the owner. An interesting fact about www is that, upon adding new documents, the ‘connectedness’ of the existing pages is diluted at a very slow rate. The diameter of the web in 1999 was 19 – 19 degrees of separation. Connections can be mapped on a logarithmic scale if they are part of a distributed network. The clustering coefficient is another way to quantize the connectedness of any system. (actual connections/potential connections). Also, 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon works with almost any actor!

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