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Information Transmission in a Social Network: Dissecting the Spread of a Quora Post

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Uploaded on Sep 6, 2011

How does information spread through a social network? This is a visualization of the upvotes made on my layman's introduction to random forests (http://www.quora.com/Random-Forests/H...).

See the full blog post here: http://blog.echen.me/2011/09/07/infor...

To represent the social dynamics of these upvotes, I drew an edge from user A to user B if user A transmitted the post to user B through an upvote. (Specifically, I drew an edge from Alice to Bob if Bob follows Alice and Bob's upvote appeared within five days of Alice's upvote; this is meant to simulate the idea that Alice was the key intermediary between my post and Bob.)

Also:
* Green nodes are users with at least one upvote edge.
* Blue nodes are users who follow at least one of the topics the post is categorized under (i.e., users who probably discovered the answer by themselves).
* Red nodes are users with no connections and who do not follow any of the post's topics (i.e, users whose path to the post remain mysterious).
* Users increase in size when they produce more connections.

Twitter: @edchedch
Website: http://echen.me

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