Monthly Archives: December 2010

The New Science of Culturomics

By Yunkyu Sohn

Using a corpus of digitalized texts of The Google Books Project (i.e. the offline version of Google Trends), Michel et al. (2011) propose a new approach for quantitative investigation of culture. Their method may have broad impacts on various disciplines such as “lexicography, the evolution of grammar, collective memory, the adoption of technology, the pursuit of fame, censorship, and historical epidemiology.”


A Beautiful Image of the Global Social Network

by James Fowler

We should do one of these for the picture friend network!  Read about the image here.

Game Theory of Mind

by Yunkyu Sohn

Traditional game theory assumes that the level of recursive belief inference is infinite when people choose their strategy as a result of guessing the others’ strategies. For example, in Keynesian beauty contest where all participants are asked to pick a number between 0 and 100 and win if one is the closest to 2/3 of population average, Nash equilibrium predicts all players should chose 0 since recursive inference about others’ preference will decrease the value of your choice, and eventually reach the minimum possible value. However studies in behavioral economics have found that the degree of recursion is bounded to smaller values.

By running a 2 dimensional stag-hunt game, recent fMRI experimental study done by Yoshida et al. demonstrates that people vary their level of inference depending on their partner’s past strategic profiles. Imaging result shows that prefrontal cortex region is subdivided by its roles for encoding uncertainty of inference of partner’s strategy and inferring the degree of recursive inference.

Professor Craig McKenzie, Monday @ HNG

Monday, Craig McKenzie will be presenting his work.  Join us.  –Mike

McKenzie is a professor in the Department of Psychology and is also on faculty at the Rady School of Management.

Check out his research.  It’s pretty interesting.