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    • Six Degrees of Separation

      1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (4 votes, average: 4.25 out of 5)
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      Six degrees of separation was originally thought be an urban myth, but now it appears it might actually be quite the opposite. This documentary examines this urban myth by bringing to light that there is a chance that anyone on this planet can and is connected by just a few steps of association. This is at the root of a significant scientific breakthrough.

      The theory behind the six degrees of separation is that everyone is connected by just a few steps. So basically it means that you know someone, who knows someone, who knows someone, who just happens to know me or someone else on this planet that you know, making us all connected. It wasn’t until scientists began thoroughly examining this theory that they made profound discoveries. Sort of puts a new perspective on the saying “It’s a small world”. How many times do you meet someone, only to find out that they know your friend, your brother or anyone else that you know. Quite often right?

      Putting this urban myth to the test has opened a whole new branch of science, Network Theory. Six Degrees of Separation examines this theory and examines how we could use it to alter the way we predict pandemics, combat disease and fight terrorism.

      Six degrees of separation from Adam Woozeer on Vimeo.

      please share:
      Published on May 31, 2009 · Filed under: Science, Technology
    • D.B. Cooper

      I was surprised no mention was made of Stanley Milgram and his 1967 'small world experiment'.

    • Jenny

      This is how facebook and all those other social networking sites got to be

    • Kedrick

      I must admit I'm genuinely impressed! Network Science is truly the next great generational break through.

    • The journey of the packages and the Scientists theory and the development with potential is amazing.This is one of the most excellent quality films going.Thanks! Yes we are all in this together.:)

    • fancypandy

      only three out of 40 make it, thats not very many!

    • Type6

      This docu makes me want to study network science… or get a job at UPS ;)!

    • David

      i like the idea of scientists using the networking pattern as a way to combat disease. it sounds really plausible.

    • Rob

      Networks are very interesting. Never thought about connection between people in the world.

      So I may be connected with a seperation of max 6 degrees with the guy/girl reading my comment now. Very interesting!

    • Tyler

      Wow. Brilliant, fascinating, and relevant. I can't wait to start hearing about this in the news!

      I think this theory might also help explain how mass builds up in atoms, and in solar systems and galaxies too. All of the matter collects in hub networks.

      Again, brilliant.

    • BEEBfan

      i love bbc documentaries!!

    • Bendik

      Wanna try it out, Rob? If you e-mail me your name, city and occupation I could try to get you a package (wow, this sounds like a scam ;) ). I live in Norway, so it would be an interesting project.

    • Lordrefaa

      I don't mean to reduce the importance of network theory, but as far as human relation networks are concerned (the most traditional understanding of the "six degrees"), two variables have been totally shadowed here : evolution in time and technology. Some societies can be perfectly described by the network theory, but not the entire humanity, at least not yet. Let's not forget that for centuries no connections existed between some continents! So if we want to apply this mathematical model to human relations, we need to define a "level of progress", some minimum "technological" media, allowing the existence of hubs and random links. Furthermore, the relevant networks for health issues might be the casual meeting network, which can be more interconnected (public spaces, transportation…) as well as more clustered (small islands). To be rigorous one needs to explicit the equivalents of abstract mathematical properties such as connectivity, link, size, "small" number… The result of the experiment is clear : 3 packages over 20 is a low success rate, both numbers being anyway too small to be a valid statistical set.

    • casstete

      I'm missing the genetic links between different cultures , tribes or civilisations which should indicate the origines of basicaly all of us ….. also what would the network look like 200 years ago ? …. would it not be a single hub at some point … which again would pouint us to the origins of civilisation and geneticaly speaking we should be able to backtrack all the way to the first man "and know " if we are missing a link ….. not guess as is the case at present .

      we should be able to pinpoint the locations of previous civilisations by using the oldest known cities as

    • Abdullahi

      I find it really interesting too :) , I never thought about it that way though I longed convinced myself that this world is made up of some general principles and thats one reason we can make analogies. Take for example that if an unqualified person gets a job, we usually say a round peg in a square hole. and when you visually picture are round peg in a square hole we know we would see some space at the angles of the square, which can help us now relate space as responsibility across 2 entirely different things…it is really intriguing.

      Though one thought is that the nodes/people that usually have less links eventually evolve to become hubs, you get to know alot of people in facebook and in school , when you travel so eventually you are likely going to become a hub someday. And i think the ones that have the most access to communication devices or means are usually the ones that get to become the hubs.

      Amazing designing from a seemingly chaotic thing.

    • Sequoia

      I bow down humbly in the presence of such gertasnes.