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The Laws of the Web: Patterns in the Ecology of Information

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Overview

Despite its haphazard growth, the Web hides powerful underlying regularities--from the organization of its links to the patterns found in its use by millions of users. Many of these regularities have been predicted on the basis of theoretical models based on a field of physics--statistical mechanics--that few would have thought applicable to the social domain.

In this book Bernardo Huberman explains in accessible language the laws of the Web. One of the foremost researchers in the field, Huberman has established, for example, that the surfing patterns of individuals are describable by a precise law. Such findings can lead to more efficient Web design and use. They also shed light on social mechanisms whose significance goes beyond the Web. In this sense, the Web is a gigantic informational ecosystem that can be used to quantify and test explanations of human behavior and social interaction.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"...[The] perfect companion on a cross-country flight or during a long quiet evening in a favorite reading chair." David G. Stork Artificial Life

The MIT Press

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780262083034
  • Publisher: MIT Press
  • Publication date: 10/1/2001
  • Pages: 115
  • Product dimensions: 5.37 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Bernardo A. Huberman is an HP Fellow at Hewlett-Packard Laboratories in Palo Alto,
California.
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Table of Contents

Preface
1 E-cology 1
2 The Phenomenon of the Web 7
3 Evolution and Structure 19
4 Small Worlds 33
5 As We Surf 41
6 Social Dilemmas and Internet Congestion 55
7 Downloading Information 71
8 Markets and the Web 83
Epilogue 97
References 101
Index 103
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