Archive for October 27th, 2010

Cooperation   no comments

Posted at 3:55 pm in Uncategorized

I’m going to have a go at looking at this from the viewpoint of psychology and modeling complex systems. From studying Economics I understand that the basic problem with cooperation is a lack of trust (prisoners dilemma etc) and the way round it is to build trust but trust is a pretty vague concept. This becomes more of an issue when you consider cooperation between people who have little face to face contact.

What I intend to do is research how people who model complexity atempt to define structures in which cooperation is considered stable (i.e. it is the most likely outcome based on the conditions of the model) and compare this to what psychologists would think of as the conditions in which people would cooperate with each other or trust each other.

Thus far I have read this from the reading list of the complexity science DTC:

Geard, N. (2001). An exploration of NK landscapes with neutrality. MSc thesis, University of Queensland.

NK landscapes were origionally developed as models for looking at evolution. It’s basically a way of calculating how the interelatedness of genes effects the ability of a gene pool in finding the best genome (gene = 1 bit of DNA coding for 1 characteristic, geneome = all the genes together in one individual, gene pool = all the genes of the species). For example, if the expression of one gene causes all the others to change to a different value is this better than if they all went about their business as individuals.

The basic conclusion of the model is that when there is no interelatedness you can evolve slowly to a peak fitness for the gene pool which isnt amazing but is still pretty good. If you add a little bit of relatedness fitness increases but more than a little bit and you get what is termed a catastrophy of complexity where fitness decreases as compliexity increases.

Looking at cooperation this is interesting because you would intuitively expect that a system with massively high levels of interconnectedness would be more stabe and cooperative than one without. The task now is to try and find work that deals with a more specific ‘real world’ scenario than one as abstracted from my topic as this.

Still, an interesting method for researching these issues I think.

Written by Paul on October 27th, 2010

IP and copyright theft   no comments

Posted at 3:32 pm in Uncategorized

IP and copyright theft are of course rather topical topics. Given as I’ve got a background in Law and Comp Sci the two most obvious avenues for studying this were closed. I decided instead to go for mathematics and economics to attack it. The little I can remember from IP law from my degree is that copyright law is old and rubbish. It’s designed to encourage innovation, but it does this by introducing something inherrently uncompetitive into a market which is based upon the idea of competition. Maybe looking at it from the economics side of things will help me understand it a bit better. As for the maths, I’ve decided to go for the Cryptography route in terms of being able to protect content from naughty people who want to steal it. It’s very hard, which is I suppose the point.

Reading wise, I’ve been told that it would help to look at number theory in order to better understand cryptography. I’ve had a little look at “A friendly introduction to number theory”, and also have got “Handbook of Applied Cryptography” which is on the recommended reading list for Stanford’s cryptography course. So it must be good. For the economics bit, I picked up “The Economics of IP law” which seems to be quite suitable given the subject choice. There are 4 volumes but I imagine that I’ll probably limit the scope to copyright (volume 1).

Written by hf1g10 on October 27th, 2010

Cybercrime from a criminologist and psychological perspective   no comments

Posted at 3:00 pm in Criminology,Psychology

The growth of the Internet presents a series of new challenges to both individuals and society as a whole.  Cybercrime refers to an array of diverse, illegal, illicit activities that all share one thing in common – the environment in which they take place – ‘cyberspace.’

After much consideration the two disciplines that I have decided to examine are Criminology and Psychology.  After exploring the underlying principles of both these disciplines, I hope to conclude whether they support each other or conflict with regards to the issue of cybercrime.  Similarly, I will also take into account the challenges that cybercrime presents to each discipline, and conclude whether these perspectives offer any solutions to the problem.

As these are both disciplines I have never studied before I am going to look at reading undergraduate text books and basic introductory books as recommended by my peers. I have decided to start my research on criminology by reading the following books:

The Oxford Handbook of Criminology by Mike Maguire, Rod Morgan, and Robert Reiner

An Introduction to Criminological Theory by Roger Hopkins Burke.

For the physiology part of my review I am going to be using the books listed below:

Basic Psychology by Henry Gleitman et al.

The Psychology of the Internet by Patricia Wallace

Introduction to Psychology: Gateways to Mind and Behaviour by Dennis Coon and John Mitterer

I have also come across the following book which I will use to do some background reading on the issue of cybercrime :

Cybercrime and Society by Majid Yar

Written by kd2v07 on October 27th, 2010

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