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Jumping on the Bandwagon: The Information Cascade

“If your friends jump off a cliff, are you going to as well?”  This is a common, illogical phrase uttered by parents in an attempt to dissuade their children from succumbing to peer pressure.  Of course, their child’s friends are mostly like not jumping off cliffs, but the overarching argument is a plea from parent […]

Google Expands AdWords Service to Include Bidding for Phone Numbers

In a recent move, Google has extended their AdWords market to accommodate bids for phone number advertising, which they have pursued in a two-prong fashion: On non-mobile devices (i.e. anything that is not a phone), for each AdWord ad,  Google can optionally append a toll-free, intermediary phone number that they provide, which tracks statistics about […]

The End of Occupy Wall Street?

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/06/nyregion/occupy-wall-street-protest-reaches-a-crossroads.html?pagewanted=2&_r=1&sq=occupy&st=cse&scp=3 The Occupy Wall Street movement has been a large protest movement across New York City as well as the rest of America, regularly drawing large numbers to the streets. The movement has drawn over $500,000 in donations, as well as received the support of labor unions and several elected officials. The protests, as the […]

Format Wars: Then and Now

If you’re a movie buff (and have the resources to truly indulge yourself), you can look through your collection and visibly see how technology has changed over time.  You’ve got high-definition Blu-ray disc of Inception, your DVD copy of Fight Club, and the original Star Wars trilogy on VHS.  It seems strange that there is […]

Fashion Industry and Information Cascades

Individual decision-making is more often than not influenced by the opinions of others. We often find ourselves following the decision of the majority—regardless of personal opinions. This phenomenon is explained in economics as an “information cascade.” In economic terms, it describes the situation in which every subsequent individual, based on the observations of others, makes […]

Viewing the World: Tipping Points and Social Epidemics

Howon Song Hs459 11/8/11 The world revolves around tipping points. A tipping point is generally defined as the moment that signals the beginning of a dramatic change; it is the “moment on the graph when the line starts to shoot straight upwards.” Malcolm Gladwell asserts that tipping points are the reasonable explanations for many seemingly […]

Dependence of consumers

When you are buying travel books online, how do you decide which one to buy? Because you are not actually looking into the books online, many people may find it difficult to find what is the best choice. Therefore, you might wonder what factors could possible influence these people on buying travel books. Recent studies […]

Online Gaming: A Model for Human Behavior

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/6951918.stm The human race, now having reached a population of 7 billion, is in the apex of its dominant genetic destiny, and is showing no signs of slowing down.  But as the population of the world increases, so does the risk of outbreak of a deadly disease with the potential to bring the human race […]

Google is indexing facebook comments for PageRank

http://www.netmagazine.com/news/google-indexing-facebook-comments-111529 Google has tweaked its “googlebot” so that it can now parse Ajax/JavaScript content, meaning that it can now index some dynamic comments from websites like facebook. Some websites will likely benefit from this feature, since having their comments appear in google search results could drive traffic to their sites. However, users could also be […]

Does Google Finally Understand Network Effects?

It’s no secret that Google is eager to try and break into the social networking market, putting themselves in with the likes of Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc. What may be a tad more surprising however is how much Google has struggled at this task, all the way up until it’s recent unveiling of Google+. Google’s […]

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