Monday, June 26, 2006

Degrees of Separation

I wonder how many degrees of separation are there for blogs?

Of course, I'm refering to the theory that anyone on the planet can be connected to any other person on the planet through a chain of acquaintances. This idea was tested in previous experiments, and the finding was that on average, there was about 6 degrees of separation.

What I am interested in, then, in how many degrees of separation there are for blogs. Meaning that if I were to chose a specific blog, then transverse via the outbound links to another blog and so on, what is the minimum number of transversals would I need to reach another specific blog?
I think that this particular question is rather interesting. In fact, I can imagine many variations on this topic. For example, does it make any difference if we can only transverse via inbound links ? Or if we only consider the links on the index pages on the blogs (ie the most recent posts only).

Will the findings for blogs differ from, say, the findings for normal webpages? What about 'dead' blogs? Will they significantly influence the average number of degrees? These questions should not be too difficult to research, because all that is needed is some sort of crawler program. The research itself can be conducted non-intrusively, almost .anonymously. I think it will be a good topic to research.

For more background information on degrees of separation, click here.

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