living in a (dis)connected world

It's social networks day for my class tomorrow and I fear it will be time for them to go to sleep while I ramble on about ties and nodes and centrality. The thing about SNA is that, while I've found it fairly useful and am well-aware that it is one of the "cool" fields in terrorism studies these days, I find it difficult to muster up enthusiasm for it unless I'm the one doing it. I guess this can be said of many research styles but SNA more than most.

If I'd been more prepared, I'd have asked my kids to do this:

An experiment in which they replicate one of the original social networks activities. Ask them to send emails to someone they knew and so on until they reach the target. This person's chosen someone in Fargo*.

I was thinking this would be a great idea and then other thoughts came into being. Would I have to restrict the target to within the United States? If I picked people I knew, then my target would have to be someone overseas.

And then it occurred to me. I actually do not know anyone who doesn't live in Washington, DC. Well, apart from LilSis2 but she's family. Apart from her, I know no one in this great country who I could pick as a target. No one.

After four years here, that's a sobering reflection. At that time in Australia, I knew people in all the states (and territories). I'd stayed in some of their houses. But here, nope. None.

* And I've seen the film so I knew where it is.


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