01 December 2012

Network Terminology : The Basics

Seeing that this blog will contain posts about the Doctor's friend network (among other statistical analysis) I think I should put down some of the terminology that I'll be using. A lot of it will be strange to most people. It certainly was to me when I first started the job. I will not be going into the extremes of the notation, but rather making sure the important items are explained in understandable terms.

Many of these beginning posts will contain this type of basic knowledge necessary to help understand when the fun stuff begins appearing.

But stay with it as it gets easier as it goes on and it will certainly help in the understanding of some of the principals used. This is the short explanation...

Network Terminology 101

Node : Represents something whether it be a person, place or thing. Sounds like the description of a noun. But it can also be something you know or have to do. It comes down to being whatever you need to show on the screen.
Nodeset : This is a group of those nodes. But they are a specific group. Like all the people or all the knowledge, or all the places represented.
Link : If someone meets another person in a story they have a link to that person. They can also have links to places, resources, or any other nodes.
Network : It all leads up to this. All your nodes with all their links on the screen at the same time.


Both the red and blue circles are Nodes. The three red Nodes consist of a Nodeset called Companions and the single blue Node is the Nodeset called Doctors. The lines between any circle is a Link. All of the above is considered the Network.

Class of Nodes

Agent : The nodeset that represents the characters in the stories be they good guys or bad guys. That designation is handled by giving each some special attributes
Location : The where did something happen nodeset. For the initial friends network, this will not be used but will come in for later analysis
Resource : Usually a physical object that can be passed from person to person, but there are exceptions.
Knowledge : Something known to a person. Can either be a one-off piece of information or a skill set like quantum physics.
Event : New Years' Eve party or a traffic accident.

For Our Purposes

In this analysis the characters are the most important item seeing that this is primarily about the Doctor's friend network. Yeah, so this is going to make things much, much simpler. In our normal work we have to deal with things like location, event, task, resource, knowledge, and action and how all of those interact. Since none of those are pertinent for a friend's network, we will put them to the side for now.

Golly Gee! Wasn't that simple? Some of these will come back in for later analysis but for now, they can be ignored.

When other facets of the analysis are investigate they will be brought in. There's work being done on the uses of the sonic screwdriver which will incorporate the resource and task nodeset and a timeline of the Doctor which will use the event nodeset. But those are in future.

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