Sunday, April 18, 2010

Seekers and evaders...

Oh, they say Facebook is out... the cool thing, of course, is to commit facebook harakiri. There are sites that will help you commit online suicide, sever all your connections and send them to all your friends and contacts...

Totally agree. It's fun for a while connecting with friends old and new...

Then it becomes a game of seekers and evaders... You get invites from people you don't know at all, whom you ignore, or you sent invites to people you barely know yet want to know, who ignore you... All in all an unpleasant experience.

Some wise sociologist (no, not the one who trilled about the six degrees of separation) once calculated that the optimal number of friends and acquaintances a normal person can maintain is 147.8!

Proposed by Britishanthropologist Robin Dunbar, it measures the "cognitive limit to the number of individuals with whom any one person can maintain stable relationships". Dunbar theorizes that "this limit is a direct function of relative neocortexsize, and that this in turn limits group size ... the limit imposed by neocortical processing capacity is simply on the number of individuals with whom a stable inter-personal relationship can be maintained."

Now what's 0.8 of a friend, who knows... But most of us reached that number on Facebook a while back. Now we're inching beyond our cognitive limits. Time to re-coop and cosset the few!

No comments:

Post a Comment