Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

People tend to communicate with similar people, even more than previously thought

Date:
October 23, 2013
Source:
Aalto University
Summary:
People’s tendency to communicate with similar people is stronger than earlier believed, which restricts the flow of information and ideas in social networks.

The timings of the calls (red arrows) allow researchers to extract patterns of people's social behaviour from large amounts of data.
Credit: Image courtesy of Aalto University

People's tendency to communicate with similar people is stronger than earlier believed, which restricts the flow of information and ideas in social networks. These are the findings that an Aalto University research group will publish this week in an article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The results were obtained by means of a computational method developed by the research group and then applied to massive amounts of anonymised mobile phone call data. The data came from a mobile phone operator's billing system and includes detailed information about the timing of hundreds of millions of mobile phone calls and the age, gender and billing types of anonymised callers and recipients.

The research is linked to computational social science, an area of multidisciplinary research that has become highly important in recent years. In this area, computational methods are used to mine information about human behavior from massive data sets. Rather than focusing on the individual, computational social science strives to understand general properties in the behavior of large groups of people. This contrasts with data collection and mining used for intelligence purposes, which has recently attracted a lot of publicity. Furthermore, the data used is always anonymised.

The research group's computational method is based on statistical analysis of the precise timing of phone calls. This allowed researchers to show that various patterns where phone calls immediately follow each other (for example, A calls B, who then calls C) are more common between people who are similar in terms of age, gender and mutual friends than could be observed based only on numbers of calls made.

Application of the developed method is not only limited to research on communication between people; it also has potential uses in areas like brain research.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Aalto University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. L. Kovanen, K. Kaski, J. Kertesz, J. Saramaki. Temporal motifs reveal homophily, gender-specific patterns, and group talk in call sequences. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2013; DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1307941110

Cite This Page:

Aalto University. "People tend to communicate with similar people, even more than previously thought." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 October 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131023090714.htm>.
Aalto University. (2013, October 23). People tend to communicate with similar people, even more than previously thought. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131023090714.htm
Aalto University. "People tend to communicate with similar people, even more than previously thought." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131023090714.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Computers & Math News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Japanese Scientists Unveil Floating 3D Projection

Japanese Scientists Unveil Floating 3D Projection

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 20, 2014) Scientists in Tokyo have demonstrated what they say is the world's first 3D projection that floats in mid air. A laser that fires a pulse up to a thousand times a second superheats molecules in the air, creating a spark which can be guided to certain points in the air to shape what the human eye perceives as an image. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Apple Enters Mobile Payment Business

Apple Enters Mobile Payment Business

AP (Oct. 20, 2014) Apple is making a strategic bet with the launch of Apple Pay, the mobile pay service aimed at turning your iPhone into your wallet. (Oct. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Google To Protect Against Piracy ... At A Cost

Google To Protect Against Piracy ... At A Cost

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) Google is changing its search-engine results to protect content producers from piracy — for a price. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
What We Know About Microsoft's Rumored Smartwatch

What We Know About Microsoft's Rumored Smartwatch

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) Microsoft will reportedly release a smartwatch that works across different mobile platforms, has a two-day battery life and tracks heart rate. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins