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Multiple edge types in Gephi

Ok, I know it’s summer, most of you are taking a well-deserved break, and there are a lot more fun things to do than dealing with networks. For those of you nodding fervently in agreement: shame on you! A plague on all your houses! Except Gryffindor, I’m in that one. And no, I didn’t just pick that one because Harry Potter‘s in it. I got sorted, the proper way. At You should really try it, it’s so much fun! Anywho, I recently got a cry for help concerning Gephi, and I thought: there may be more lost souls out there, struggling to get this right. So here’s the pickle: can you visualize different types of edges in Gephi? Not all your relationships are the same: you don’t hang with yo brudda of da same mudda in the same way as you do with your bros, and you don’t treat them the same as your hos. Like chicks before dicks, ya know? This was already true 100, 200, 500, even 1,000 years ago. People had family (through descent as well as marriage: sometimes it’s useful to distinguish between the two), friends, colleagues, superiors, inferiors, extraterrestrial acquaintances, … . Or you might want to look at different kinds of interactions between individuals: who writes/ lends money/ sells a slave/ … to whom, whatever, you name it! Although you’ll probably end up filtering your networks according to specific types of relations anyway, it’s not a bad idea to start out with the complete picture, to capture and…

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A network framework of cultural history

Have we got another great network for you guys! We can only dream of creating such sophisticated maps and diagrams one day… One of my super secret network informants tipped me off about this article in Science magazine: basically, what a group of researchers did was map out where a bunch of (historical) celebrities let out their first cry (blue) and where they snuffed it (red). This resulted in this amazing video: It runs from 600 BC till, well, right about now actually, using the dates and locations of the births and deaths of some 120,000 individuals (but keep in mind that it’s biased towards the US and Europe).  To quote Nature:  ‘Historians tend to focus in highly specialized areas, says Schich. “But our data allow them to see unexpected correlations between obscure events never considered historically important and shifts in migration.’ Yup, that’s what we’re here for, folks. You’re welcome. 

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The Trismegistos Tabloid, July 18 2014

(Since Facebook doesn’t allow XXL pictures, and without them, this week’s Trismegistos Tabloid would be worthless, I’m posting it here, just this once. You can click on the pics to supersize them)Today’s TT features an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of the Trismegistos People database! Some of you are probably already familiar with our website and how it works. Others just liked this page out of sympathy, or perhaps rather a sense of social obligation. But undoubtedly, most of you just like the funny pictures and have no idea what Trismegistos is actually all about. Don’t worry, I don’t judge. In the end, it’s all about the rising number of post and page likes I can present our Trismegistos overlord in the hope of a nice Christmas bonus. Anywho, this is what you get when looking up Mrs. Demetria-Tereus, daughter of Hermaios, online: It shows her name, her parents, additional info on ethnics, titles, etc. if available, and then a list of all the texts she appears in. Pretty straightforward. In our Filemaker version, this is what her record looks like: We get some extra info, such as the family tree and a link to the Name database for onomastic purposes. Since our beloved D.-T. is mentioned four times, she also has four records in the related reference database: This is a much more extensive database, with links not only to the Name database and her family members, just like in PER, but also to the Text database, all other people mentioned in the…

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Shake those tail feathers (3)

All good things come to an end, and so it is with the 20th edition of the World Cup. After a month full of love bites, nerve-wrecking extra time, Schwalbe’s that could teach this kid a lesson or two, and even a game where you only needed to blink to miss a goal, we can finally catch up on that much-needed sleep and return to a more healthy dietary regime than potato chips or ready-to-eat meals (running back and forth between the TV and the microwave during those 5 bloody minutes, ready-to-eat my ***! I practiced so much on that incendio spell with my wand; I guess I should really start accepting the fact that Muggle material’s all I’ve got in me, and that Hogwarts doesn’t send out acceptance letters to 28-year-olds…). So, this is what the final network looks like: Germany clearly stands out here, with the highest weighted outdegree. According to our statistics, they should have faced the Netherlands in the final instead of Argentina (based on the number of goals in the previous games), but those ****** Argentinians with their sterile defence again (we’re not a fan here in Belgium…). I wasn’t quite satisfied with this graph though. With the draws left out, it kind of splits the tournament up into two divisions and with that giant arrow pointing at Brasil somehow creates the illusion that that game was the grand finale (though in terms of jaw-dropping statistics it probably was a winner).So I decided to try the old method again and…

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EUSN 2014

With a slight ‘retardation’, our recap of the historical sessions of the first EUSN conference. There were inspiring papers, fancy posters, delicious tapas, amazing vocals, and a keynote that took the FIFA world ranking to a whole new level (and the games themselves of course; but why on earth would you shut down your bar at midnight with Belgium-USA at 0-0 and extra time coming up??).  We were spoilt here, with two full sessions on historical network analysis. On Wednesday, the first started off with the late middle ages, and how the social organisation of the Hansa, with its extensive trade network, changed in towns like Lübeck and Hamburg after the Black Death (‘Plague and Position: The Black Death and the Emergence of the Medieval Hansa’ by Bernd Wurpts and Katherine Stovel). Based on property transfers documented in wills, and kinship networks, they discovered that ‘new men’, i.e. new citizens, came in and acted as brokers across towns, connecting the local elites, and that the regulation of private property transfer possibly spilled over from the legal/religious to the political/economic sphere and was therefore the the cause for the regulation of the Hansa trade.      Next up was Cornell Jackson (‘Exploring the Relationships among the People of Medieval Scotland’), Silke’s very own SNA Jedi master. He’s not a historian himself, but with his SNA background he contributes to the People of Medieval Scotland project. He created a witness affiliation network based on charters, and tested Valente’s diffusion models (Network Models of the Diffusion of Innovations, Hampton Press, 1995)…

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Shake those tail feathers (2)

Now that the group stage is over, it’s time for an update of our World Cup network! Nodes and labels are sized according to their outdegree (yay Belgium!).  Draws generate no ties, so that’s why the number of edges in each cluster differs. The top left group is the only one with no draws. Edge weight is again based on the difference in goals (let’s ignore Belgium here…). Now that the round of 16 has started, connected components should start to emerge soon, resulting in a giant one in the end. We’ll keep you posted!

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In the shadows of the pyramids…

Today we will take you back in time… *impatient reader shouting at his computer* Yeah, duh! This is a blog about ancient networks! Douche! Now bring on those exotic Egyptians and six-packed Spartans! There. Now stop complaining What we actually mean is that today we’ll talk about the very first network study we did, the first case study we tinkered with to get familiar with different SNA concepts and processes and which we presented at our very first Sunbelt conference in Hamburg in 2013. Yes, you see, no need to worry. You’ll get there. Only a year ago we were SNA virgins too, eager to have our cherry plucked… am I taking this too far? Anywho, we started out with the archive of Zenon. Who is this Zenon fellow, you ask, and why were you drawn to his particular archive? Because he is the HERO of every papyrologist, I tell you. If there were a papyrology high school, Zenon’s poster would be tacked to every locker door, he’d flash a perhaps not so perfectly white and maybe even slightly lacunose smile from every smartphone background, and bitch fights would break out every other lunch break over who gets to dip his smooth flowing pen into their ink palette (and I mean this in the most literal of senses. We are not a gang of mummiphilous pervs). Zenon’s archive was found somewhere around the beginning of the 20th century during illegal excavations (I was going to say that our field bears…

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Shake those tail feathers

As some of you may perhaps by off-chance have subtly noticed, there’s a soccer craze going on out there. Everyone knows ninjas are awesome soccer players (they’re awesome at everything actually, that’s why they get to become ninjas), yet we somehow seem to lack this particular ninja gene… But we can hoot and yell like any strappy 40-something ManU fan with an eye-catching extending waistline peaking out from under his jersey and spilling over his Primark training pants, pint in one hand, and, well, pint in the other!Got off to a bad start, missing some of the more spectacular matches due to some time-zone related issues (those poor Japanese: everything’s scheduled at truly ungodly hours there), but having to sit through the whole mind-boggingly boring Iran-Nigeria, well I would like to say encounter, but it wasn’t even that, but now we’re back on track, and, since spaghetti monsters are turning out to be the sole reason of our existence, the enlightenment to our inner Buddha’s as it were, we thought it would be neat to construct one in the next couple of weeks. It’s a pretty simple graph up till now of course, with only diads since no-one’s played more than once yet. It’s directed, with winners pointing to losers, and and the weight of the edges resembles the difference in goals. So Netherland-Spain has a weight of 4, while Iran-Nigeria has no edge, since it was a tie. That’s all for today, folks! Belgium’s playing this evening, so it’s time to focus…

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If you insist… more tutorials on R

This post is for all you nutcases out there who are considering working with R. Don’t be tempted by the Dark Side! They do NOT have cookies, however much they advertise the opposite. Only cookie monster has cookies, and he is obviously a UCINET guy. Because he’s blue, you see. And the UCINET website has lots of blue. Pure logic. Still sticking to R? Meh, well, it’s your life, waste away. Luckily, I got some tutorials to get you going. Just to be clear: these aren’t SNA-geared tutorials, just for R in general, but since you need a basic knowledge of how it works, this will definitely help. The first one is just the way we like it: simple and fun. It revolves around cats. Yes, cats. The internet is all about cats these days, and now they’re taking over R as well. Ok, gotta admit, R scores some serious points with this one. Get your catisfaction here. The second tutorial is a little more advanced, and explains how to write your own packages from scratch. If your going to be reusing functions often, this might come in handy. No cats involved in this one though, too bad 🙁  Finally, some reminders: – the CfP deadline for the Historical Network Research conference in Ghent in September is approaching (May 10). Make sure to sign up for our meet-and-greet! Check out one of our previous posts for more info. – I don’t think I’ve mentioned this one before, but there’s a…

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More events!

Here are some more events we thought you might be interested in. You might even spot us at some! May 9-11: Networks and Interactions conference at Leiden University. Silke will enlighten the world with a paper on Demotic contracts from Ptolemaic Thebes. She created this cool multi-layered network incorporating the scribes, the contracting parties and the witnesses, linking those in the same documents, as well as recording family ties. The main focus is on the witnesses: how were they chosen? Were they connected to the notarial and scribal offices, or can they be linked to one or both parties as family and/or acquaintances perhaps? Or were they chosen randomly, passers-by simply picked from the streets when needed? May 12: a conference on mixed-method approaches to social network analysis at Hendon Campus (Middlesex University) in Londen, where qualitative research is applied to social networks besides the traditional quantitative approach July 11: Silke will present her Theban witness paper to a London audience this time, as part of the Digital Classicist London & Institute of Classical Studies summer seminars. More info, abstract and other speakers here! August 1: During yet another seminar in the Digital Classicist summer edition, Sebastian Rahtz and Gabriel Bodard will present the SNAP:DRGN project (of which our very own Trismegistos is a privileged partner!) June 23-28 (2015!): Sunbelt XXXV – next mega SNA conference bij the INSNA will take place in Brighton (UK) next year, save the date!To make things easier, I created a calendar dedicated entirely to spaghetti-monster-related events, which…

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