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Where do Power Laws Come From?

Paper: Gabaix, Xavier. Power Laws in Economics: An Introduction, Journal of Economic Perspectives—Volume 30, Number 1—Winter 2016—Pages 185–206. https://pubs.aeaweb.org/doi/pdf/10.1257/jep.30.1.185. Summary: This article begins with a brief background on power laws and their origins in economics. As early as 1969, on the hunt for a nontrivial and true law, economist Paul Samuelson seemed to only be […]

Why Luxury Brands Choose Such High Prices

http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20171006-the-psychology-behind-spending-big When talking about Network Effects we discussed that when the price for an item is lower more people will buy because it makes the fraction of the population of who can afford it larger. Thus, people will sometimes buy inferior items over quality items just because it’s cheaper. However, I started thinking about how […]

Diffusions in the Music Streaming Industry

https://www.fool.com/investing/2018/10/16/googles-plan-to-compete-with-spotify.aspx This article details Google’s plan to compete with Spotify in the music streaming industry. As many people are well aware, Spotify has been the dominant player in this industry for some time. Naturally, because all streaming services provide pretty much the same product for relatively similar prices, the streaming business proves to be a […]

Information cascade on Sexual Harrasement

Article: Trump and the ‘information cascade’ created a cultural reckoning by GILLIAN TETT Website: FINANCIAL TIMES https://www.ft.com/content/6973e6d6-d047-11e7-9dbb-291a884dd8c6     The article talks about the issue of sexual harassment, as it became increasingly of hot discussion in recent decades. However, the problem has been existing for over a century and countless women were victims of sexual […]

The Democratic and Republican Networks: How to Compare

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2016/09/08/how-different-are-the-democratic-and-republican-parties-too-different-to-compare/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.3d216e2138fe To begin, this is just one possible theory that explains the differences in the networks and political processes of the Democratic and Republican parties in the U.S. — there’s certainly no hard proof that can be found for this kind of thing. Many people tend to view our major political parties in the U.S. […]

Exploitation of Network Diffusion

https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-29475019 With the increasing digitization of social networks in the modern age, information and ideas that used to be exchanged “in person” are now deeply embedded in communication mediums such as facebook, twitter, or instagram. But what is the effect of this? More specifically, in class we discussed Network Diffusion, and the idea that in […]

A Theory of Fads, Fashion, Custom and Cultural Change as Information Cascades

Paper Link: https://www.jstor.org/stable/2138632 This paper is closely related to the topic we discussed in the lecture: Information Cascade. This paper not only explains the development of uniform social behavior but also analyzes why the convergence of social behavior can be idiosyncratic and fragile. I want to specifically talk about an example about fashion and how […]

Network Effects Through Raids in Pokemon GO

https://pokemongohub.net/post/article/a-year-of-raiding-how-raids-changed-the-game/   This article reflects on the introduction of raids in the popular mobile app, Pokemon GO. Prior to the introduction of raids, Pokemon GO had relatively little interpersonal interaction. Players interacted with the environment independently of other players. With the addition of raids, an entirely new form of play was introduced. These raids were […]

Augur: Decentralized Prediction Market

http://www.economist.com/finance-and-economics/2018/08/09/blockchains-could-breathe-new-life-into-prediction-markets To answer our questions about the future, gamblers and betters can use Augur, an online decentralized prediction market. They allow people to buy and sell predictions like they would with shares on the stock market. Essentially, they incentivize people with valuable information to create more accurate predictions about the future. Gaining the knowledge from […]

How Ideas Go Viral in Academia

https://www.technologynetworks.com/neuroscience/news/how-ideas-go-viral-in-academia-311541 We like to believe that meritocracy determines if an idea is spread through a network, especially in an academic setting. However, in a study done at University of Colorado Boulder suggest this may not be the case. Drawing on a 2015 dataset that described the hiring histories of more than 5,000 faculty members in […]

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