- We understand the dynamics of the world around us as by associating pairs ofevents, where one event has some influence on the other. These pairs of eventscan be aggregated into a web of memories representing our understanding of anepisode of history. The events and the associations between them need not bedirectly experienced-they can also be acquired by communication. In this paperwe take a network approach to study the dynamics of memories of history. Firstwe investigate the network structure of a data set consisting of reportedevents by several individuals and how associations connect them. We focus ourmeasurement on degree distributions, degree correlations, cycles (whichrepresent inconsistencies as they would break the time ordering) and communitystructure. We proceed to model effects of communication using an agent-basedmodel. We investigate the conditions for the memory webs of differentindividuals to converge to collective memories, how groups where theindividuals have similar memories (but different from other groups) can form.Our work outlines how the cognitive representation of memories and socialstructure can co-evolve as a contagious process. We generate some testablehypotheses including that the number of groups is limited as a function of thetotal population size.
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posted to Paul Kedrosky's Infectious Greed on Tue 17th Aug 10
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