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U.S. Politics – An Approximation of the Prisoner’s Dilemma?

Can U.S. politics be approximated by the Prisoner’s Dilemma? According to Jonathan Sallet in an article for The Hill (http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/politics/179361-politics-and-the-prisoners-dilemma), they can. He argues that the U.S. political system in its current antagonistic state because the incentive structure is biased toward attacking opponents rather than working together. You can see how this resembles the Prisoner’s […]

Social Networks: A Visual Case Study

In our course of study, we have delved upon the basics of networks and graphs. A graph, at its basic definition, is a series of nodes- which can represent anything from people to cities- that are interconnected by a set of edges, which represent some sort of relationship. Graphs play a huge role in our […]

Money Launderers Know How to Network

Hidden Relationships and Networks: Financial Institutions at Risk Link: http://www.oracle.com/us/industries/financial-services/045950.pdf In class, our discussion of networks has relied on a few key assumptions: the nodes are clearly defined, the relationships (edges) are known or reasonably accessible, and a few basic theories can be applied to our analysis of a given network (mainly the idea of […]

The Network Flow of Flying

Flying is a pain. Between security checks, waiting at the terminal, the lengthy boarding process and numerous other time consuming activities, you waste hours of travel time before you even get in the air. What if there was a way to reduce some of this time? Physicist Jason Steffen has found a way to cut […]

Stumbling Through the Semester

http://www.stumbleupon.com/ In 2001 a group of men, Garrett Camp, Geoff Smith, Justin LaFrance, and Eric Boyd released StumbleUpon to the public.  StumbleUpon is a random tour guide to the internet.  The site allows you to choose from almost 500 topics and then searches the internet for sites of the user chosen topics.  The user will […]

Game Theory and Relationships

http://www.slate.com/id/2188684/#add-comment If you have taken some biology class over the course of your academic career, it is not unreal to come across Darwinian theories about natural choosiness of women. Their natural desire for attractive, sociable and smart men stem from billions of years of evolution according to the theories. However, as much as they are […]

The Future of Utilities Sales: Real-Time Auctions?

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/pricelock-launches-online-natural-gas-and-fuel-auction-platform-2011-09-12 This morning, Pricelock, known as the online leader in energy solutions for US businesses, hosted a $350M natural gas auction for CenterPoint Energy’s Natural Gas Operations using its platform Pricelock Marketplace, the first of its kind to offer companies real-time, customizable auctions for natural gas and motor fuels.  In Pricelock Marketplace, buyers and sellers […]

A ‘perfect’ Nash Equilibrium?

We have defined the concepts of ‘best response’ and ‘Nash equilibrium’ during lectures. We defined a ‘Nash equilibrium’ (NE) as a pair of strategies in whicg each player’s strategy is a best response to the other player’s strategy. We also defined a ‘best response’ in the following way: a strategy S*1 is a ‘best response’ […]

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