Six Degrees Hits the Web

Not sure if this has been done before but it is the first that I have seen of anything based on the premise.

Six degrees of separation is the theory is based on the following premise:

“The concept is based on the idea that the number of acquaintances grows exponentially with the number of links in the chain, and so only a small number of links is required for the set of acquaintances to become the whole human population.”


The site Knover is based on this hypothesis and touts itself as “The Ultimate Place to Learn About People”. I am not sure of that but it is a very interesting way to learn about individuals and their connections. In the database are the details “Covering 16347 of the Web’s Most Mentioned”. It ranges from Bill Gates to Tina Turner, so it covers a lot of topics and people.

You enter a name on the left and a and on the right, with auto-complete to boot. If the results are going to be any good to you they need to be in the database and while it covers a lot of people it is by no means exhaustive, so if the auto-complete is not making suggestions then it they might not be there. Then click the “How” button.

So Bill Gates is connected to Tina Turner by 3 degrees. From here you can select the individual profiles of the individuals that connect these people or you can click the “Why” button to see why they are connected. In this instance the next person is Warren Buffett and there are 204 documents to support this connection. A nice touch is the inclusion ofrelated video, powered by YouTube.

So you can work your way throught the connections to see who got us to Tina Turner (it was Oprah Winfrey). But you can also request that the search makes stronger connections, this often involves more people in the chain but that makes it more interesting.

The concept is one that I find very interesting and the added information that is provided is a great tool to find out interesting facts and associations. Including the fact that I found myself trying to find the most unassociated people to try to trip it up, I have failed so far. I also had the thought that if you were stuck for ideas to blog about this might be a good place to start, base a story on some weird connection that people might not know about.

Go ahead be diverted who knows you might just learn something.

Knover Screenshot


Eight Bucks Worth of Advice

Not very happy today. I went to the doctor and it turns out I have infected sinuses. In addition to that I went to the music shop to try to return an audio cord that was faulty. In addition to that I thought I had found a solution to record Skype which worked yesterday and does not work today! In addition to that I had a weird thing on my back biopsied cause the doctor was concerned it might be something "nasty". In addition to that my Line Out on the computer is stuffed.

So I feel like crap. The doctor put me onto some antibiotics to clear up the infected sinuses. Still copious volumes of what can only be described as primordial ooze continues to inhabit my sinuses which refuses to budge. This in turn is causing a headache from hell that is immune to paracetamol. I sincerely hope that it improves by tomorrow. The results on the suspicious thing is pending pathology.

So today I went looking for some digital speakers (I have SPDIF on the sound card as well) and I check the shop that I got my audio gear from. They like every other shop in Cairns does not have Digital Speakers. The guy in the shop did suggest a couple of things I could do to fix the plug in the computer. But while I was there I tried to return a cable.

When I bought my mixer, a Behringer UB 1002FX, I also bought a stereo to RCA cable. When I got it home I noticed that where the two cables can be pulled apart to reach connections the insulation had split. So I took it back to the place that I got it from and showed him what had happened. When I got this cable there were none on the shelf but the guy that served me managed to find a used one out the back that he gave me a 10% discount on. So today this other guy in the shop says:

"… ahhh well we probably sold you that cable with a discount to boot"

So I guess that means that because I got it at a discount it is okay that it is faulty, which is pretty much what I said to him. He then said that even though the wires were showing the cable would work fine. So I guess that means that it is okay that it is faulty because it still works… So then I said that I thought he should take it back and give me a refund due to the fact that the product was not right and that it was not acceptable. I also said that I was actually charged about full price for it. To that he dropped the clanger:

"Well I reckon that you have had about eight bucks of advice this afternoon"

I just walked out. What a wanker. This is no way at all to treat a customer, at least one that you want to come back. I was so shocked at this reply. I will never return to that shop. I am not going to spend any more time blogging about a looser.

So the other thing that I have been doing is trying to find a better way of recording Skype. So I had this brainwave yesterday. I will have to do this in point form:

  1. Connect the speaker out on the computer to the mixer CD/TAPE in.
  2. Connect the headphones to the PHONES socket (so I can hear everything)
  3. Press the CD/TAPE TO MIX button

Without pressing the CD/TAPE TO MIX button I can hear the other person and myself by turning up the volume on the mixer for the phones. But I have to press the "TO MIX" button to record both people in the conversation.

This indeed works, by recording the audio in Audacity. Well it worked yesterday. Today for no apparent reason the other person can hear themselves like you can when you select the stereo mix button. This makes no sense at all. As far as the computer is concerned all the audio is coming from the mixer to the line in as one signal. But for some reason I am getting a stereo mix as the result. Yesterday on the other hand it worked, perfectly. I have no idea why it worked yesterday and not today.

Back to Hot Recorder. And my infected sinuses and a buggered socket on the computer and a computer that acts as it computers do. Without logic that is, so condition normal.