Are you on MySpace? Are you old school and have a Friendster account? Do you remember the website Six Degrees? My friend Noah Brier lent me this book in New York and I was surprised I never heard about it before. I would say this book laid the foundation for all research on social networks.
This book really is the foundation for tipping point and all social networks today. However, the book is a bit repetitive and overly technical in some places. Some highlights from the book include:
- The real history of how the theory of 6 degrees of separation began.
- How the 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon game started.
- How computer viruses spread and how Mafiaboy used networks to take down Yahoo!, eBay and Amazon.
- The success of hubs and nodes and how people like Vernon Jordan became ‘networked’.
- Power laws, Metcalfe’s law and other ways to track growth of networks.
Noah’s Recommendation: Don’t buy it. Read the reviews at Amazon to get a sense of the book. If you really want to know the history behind 6 degrees of separation and networks in general then you should read it.