How Diverse is Facebook?

In order to make Facebook as open and connected as possible for everyone, one of our goals is to understand how different populations of users join and use the service. With that objective in mind, the Facebook Data team recently sought to answer the question, “How diverse are the ethnic backgrounds of the people usingContinue reading “How Diverse is Facebook?”

Androgenization of Cameron

The baby name blog has a great post about how some names seem to become more female over time. It would appear from recent years that many names are becoming increasingly androgynous, and parents are afraid: what if my boy’s name becomes girlish? The author posits that one could surmise, this is it, the boypocalypse:Continue reading “Androgenization of Cameron”

Youtube Epidemiology Interface

Youtube launched the most amazing statistics recently, hidden under their collapsed “Statistics & Data” header. Instead of a random list of awards, it now shows a timeline of the growth of the video’s popularity along with references to each source. Take for instance the video “Chap-hop History” by Mr. B the Gentleman Player: In additionContinue reading “Youtube Epidemiology Interface”

Teaching data science

The New York Times had a piece over the weekend discussing the how computer science curricula are limited in their capacity to teach distributed computation and data mining: For the most part, university students have used rather modest computing systems to support their studies. They are learning to collect and manipulate information on personal computersContinue reading “Teaching data science”

Venturing to the tail

It’s now second nature to think that the top 1% of media account for an overwhelming percentage of overall sales. But how many people actually consume content from the more obscure parts of Netflix’s catalog? Sharad and Co. at Yahoo! Research just released the results of some research looking at how users fit into long-tailContinue reading “Venturing to the tail”

Bay Bridge Logistics

Fortunately I’m not affected at all by the added day of Bay Bridge Closure, but this quote about the repair amazes me: The parts needed to make the fix were manufactured overnight by Stinger Welding Inc. in Coolidge, Ariz. Weighing about 18,000 pounds, they landed at Oakland International Airport aboard a chartered plane Sunday afternoon.Continue reading “Bay Bridge Logistics”

Maintained Relationships on Facebook

We were asked a simple question: is Facebook increasing the size of people’s personal networks? This is a particularly difficult question to answer, so as a first attempt we looked into the types of relationships people do maintain, and the relative size of these groups. While the average Facebook user communicates with a small subset of their entire friend network, they maintain relationships with a group two times the size of this core. This not only affects each user, but also has systemic effects that may explain why things spread so quickly on Facebook.

Reality Check, Please

Food Network apparently has a magazine and the first issue actually has a few interesting articles on food and economics. One, titled Reality Check, Please discusses design tricks on menus that restaurants use to manipulate diners’ psychology. For instance: Menus typically show prices right after dish descriptions rather than in a column. Why? So youContinue reading “Reality Check, Please”

Cardinal Stew

While looking for recipes for Steelers-inspired food, I came across this gem on the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Cardinal Stew 1 – washed up cardinal quarter back 5 – mediocre offensive lineman 3 – legitimate pass receivers 2 – Steeler Coach wannabe’s Toss ingredients vigorously in large (Super) bowl, Bake under extreme heat for 60 minutes. CoolContinue reading “Cardinal Stew”