Tag Archives: network analysis

A Tale of Two Facebook Apps: Viral Vs. Non-Viral Growth

For my SI 508 Networks class last semester I did an analysis of one of my Facebook applications, Notecentric. Notecentric was a social network that I had written during the Summer of ’06 and I had recently ported it to the Facebook Developer Platform in Summer ’07 shortly after the platform had been launched.

The growth of Notecentric isn’t what I had hoped it would be. Not too many people use it, probably due to network effects of Facebook promoting a competing app (note to Facebook: if you want to promote a level playing field, don’t play favorites!) and other general performance issues (the application is pretty barebones and the RFacebook library I used to write it is pretty damn slow. It times out a lot!).

Anyway, I got some neat network data from it, which made the whole thing worthwhile. You can check out the original paper I wrote last semester here.

I’m going to be presenting my analysis during the School of Information’s annual expoSItion. It’s like a science fair except without the exploding volcanoes. During my Winter break, I developed another app, mainly for fun. It’s called Musical Instruments. Basically it lets you list which instruments you play and see which instruments your friends play. I had somewhat higher hopes for this application as a data gathering tool, and sure enough, it seems to be doing some cool stuff on first analysis. For expoSItion I figured I’d grab some data from this new app and compare the two.

I ran some initial analysis on the Musical Instruments app. I won’t go over a lot of the original metrics I used (number of peers with app installed, percentage of peers with app installed, etc) and I’ll just skip to the pictures.

This is an initial view of the Notecentric network:

notecentric_far_small.jpg

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