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Publishers, Advertisers, and Modified Second-Price Auctions Our in-class analysis of second-price auctions was limited to the sealed-bid variety, in which all the participants submitted their bids at once and the winner was determined by reading off these bids.  A variation of this classic Vickrey auction model, however, occurs when buyers bid in successive rounds, much like in first-price auctions, and […]

Make it Tip in your Favor

How do rumors spread? How do dictators that were in power for decades suddenly get overthrown? What led to the rapid rise of Hush Puppies in the 1990s? Malcolm Gladwell attempted to explain how social epidemics spread in his book, “The Tipping Point”. He did not, however, explain when this “tipping point” occurred. Why is […]

The Collegetown Apartment Dutch Auction

It’s about that time of year again. The weather is getting colder, courses are demanding more time and focus, and the anxiety of students who have yet to sign leases for an apartment for the next academic year is reaching an all-time high. It has become an “accepted fact” around campus that if one does […]

Game Theory of the Presidential Campaigns

With the election for president coming up this November, both Mitt Romney and Barack Obama are turning up the campaign trail intensity.  As time goes on, the candidates and their supporters seem to become even more polarized against each other.  Romney, Obama, and their supporters use campaign tactics that become even more ruthless.  However, do […]

Market Clearing Prices in the Mobile Market

As the mobile phone market becomes more and more competitive, consumer behavior in the market becomes harder to predict.  More consumers are choosing smartphones over regular phones, and more manufacturers are striving for better mobile performance.  So with multiple options, what type of phone will each consumer choose, and what are the natural prices within […]

How to Beat Bribery

Bribery is a huge problem in India and many other countries. What can we do to prevent bribery? This article explains current penalty for getting caught for bribery in India and the suggested a change to the penalty system that may prevent bribery in future. According to the article, more than half of Indians have […]

Reddit AMAs, a New Forum for Web Based Conversations

Source:   Reddit is a popular social news network that has grown large in the last year and currently has about 1 billion page views per month. A user can browse the front page or choose to browse a specific subreddit,a specific community within reddit, such as /r/politics or /r/atheism. Users generate and post the […]

“The Game Layer”

In class we have talked about some fairly simple two player games and auctions among small numbers of people.  However there are several sets of additional games that can be applied to large networks of people.  Seth Priebatsch, founder of SCVNGR, is working on adding what he calls the “Game Layer” on top of the […]

Better Online Social Networks than Facebook?

Source:   Facebook is the most used online route for social networking today, but it is not the only one. The article discusses three other online social networks that are newer and lesser known but have some very appealing features for more intimate networking than Facebook.   One of the most frequently cited problems of Facebook […]


In the paper “Why your friends have more friends than you do” published in the American Journal of Sociology, Scott L. Feld demonstrates this seeming paradox. In his example, there are eight girls, whose mutual friendships are denoted by solid lines. While Betty has only one friend, Sue, Sue has four friends, Betty, Alice, Pam […]

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Blogging Calendar

September 2012