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Comment Re:Facebook follows the power law too (Score 1) 265

"People spend over 700 billion minutes per month on Facebook"

That means each "user" spends an average of 15 minutes per month on face book. Or just over 27 seconds per day.

500,000,000 "active users". 700,000,000,000 minutes spent per month. That's 1400 minutes per active user, or just over 23 hours per month, so about 40 minutes each day. Facebook is a very important website for a non-negligible proportion of the world!

Comment Re:The most important quote (Score 1) 265

and one out of 26 signs into Facebook on a daily basis.

Or rephrased, roughly 96% of the "users" sign in less than daily. The graph would be interesting to see. My wife checks FB at maximum interval of a couple hours. Everyone knows someone like that, but that doesn't mean they're a statistically relevant population.

It's 1 out of 26 of the world population who sign in daily. Approximately half of FB users sign in daily.


Submission + - How smart are the Facebook fans of... (

dusqi writes: InsideFacebook reports on a new website called LikeAudience which profiles the personality, IQ, life satisfaction, and demographics of who likes various Facebook pages. For example, people who like Bill Nye the Science Guy are on average high in IQ, whereas people who like Cheryl Cole are low. People who like Sarah Palin tend to be in a relationship, whereas people who like Joe Biden tend to be single. LikeAudience is aimed at social media marketers, but it's fun to browse too.

Comment Sharing is optional. Just like iPhone apps. (Score 1) 459

Users have to agree to a specific extended permission. A box will pop up that says 'Do you want to share your phone number and address with this application?' and then you say yes or no. If you don't want to share your location, as the summary implies, just don't click yes. Problem solved. This is a non-story that is only on Slashdot because it has decided that Facebook is bad. I don't see a similar story about iPhone applications where you can choose to (*shock horror*) share your current location obtained by GPS! Quick, everyone stamp on your iPhones!

Comment Re:Limited Use (Score 1) 178

Is there any reason why a computer savvy person will act so differently than someone who does not use a computer?

Asperger's syndrome and the Autism spectrum.

It's likely that there are differences between people who play MMOs and people who do not, and the average position on the autism spectrum might be one of them. But MMO players aren't some tiny specialised group (since millions of people play). So despite the evidence from this website, most geeks are probably close enough to being human to usefully examine what decisions they make.

Comment Re:Limited Use (Score 2, Insightful) 178

#1 You can only generalize to the population studied

Is there any reason why a computer savvy person will act so differently than someone who does not use a computer? We're talking about making decisions based on many fundamental human drives such as self-interest, reciprocity, emotions, etc. These go all the way back through evolution.

Anyway, currently economics spends most of its time making sweeping assumptions about the whole of humanity based on the most simple theories about what drives behaviour - so any attempt to study real people is a step in the right direction. The current economic crisis was all about perceptions of risk, short-term interest, misunderstanding, and eventually panic - all experienced and acted on by real people.

Comment Re:Gas (Score 1) 874

You can also drive across the entirety of Britain on one tank of gas, because it's that fucking tiny and it's uniformly in a temperate zone that makes bicycling feasibly almost year-round.

Now try that in, say, Arizona during the month of July. I hope you allotted time to get a shower and change into your work clothes in the morning, and another to get home and do the same. Oh, wait, are we having a drought too?

Energy usage goes up based on where you live. Not everyone lives in shitty little teeny-tiny island nations that get a kick out of trying to out-socalist their neighbors.

What does it matter how big the country is? No one drives across the entirety of Britain to work and back each day, even if you can do it on one tank of gas. And actually, considering that Britain is known for its rain, not many people enjoy cycling here either. At my workplace a good number of people cycle in, and they manage to allot time to take a shower too. Hardly anyone enjoys cycling, and hardly anyone enjoys allotting extra time to take showers - but pollution costs money, whether you pay to clean up after yourself through a carbon tax now, or whether your kids pay it instead in a few decades time when your drought gets even worse. So don't pretend that somehow America is in some kind of unique situation that excuses your laziness.

Comment Facebook is better than standalone websites (Score 1) 136

I am a Facebook developer who runs a popular quiz application (myPersonality). Firstly, I don't understand why this article is picking on quizzes, since any application that you use will have access to your profile. Secondly, Facebook has a couple of good ways of preventing spam from any application. At the start, an application has to specifically ask for an "extended permission" to send you an e-mail. That means another box pops up and the user has to choose to receive e-mails from that application. Even after a user has given permission, applications never actually have access to your e-mail address - all they have is the ability to tell Facebook to send a specific user ID an e-mail on their behalf. This means that if you remove the application, it can no longer e-mail you as Facebook simply denies the request.

Finally, although an application is given access to your profile information (age, gender, etc. but not e-mail address or phone number), the Facebook developer terms state that it is not allowed to store it for longer than 24 hours from your last use. Although this doesn't stop applications from doing it, at least if you find out then you can report the application to Facebook and they will take action.

Comment Another way to look at it... (Score 2, Insightful) 566

Another way to look at the problem is to consider what you'd do if there were 99 doors, you picked one, then Monty opened 97 of the rest of the doors (leaving your door, and one other). Obviously in this case you'd switch.

The reason people don't switch may be related to regret theory. If you switch and lose, you'll feel really bad because it will feel like you just lost a car (even though you didn't technically have it to begin with). So people stick with their current choice.

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