In its primary context, a network is a foundation upon which humans are interconnected to each other in what they do. In the globalized world, the primary issue is the consideration of the numerous choices that people and businesses have to undertake in the information era. The origin of the understanding of network economics is traced back to the classical work of Cournot (1838). The theorist was the first economist to explicitly state the relationship between the competitive price where there is an intersection of the demand and the supply curves. Another scholar who postulated the idea was Pigou (1920), who described it in the perspective of setting out a transportation network that comprised a system-optimized and a user-optimized solution.

In the present day, the emergence of artificial intelligence means that humans have awakened to the reality of machine learning where information is now perceived in a more computerized manner. One key area that has been of focus in the concept of the “strength of weak ties” was postulated by sociologist Mark Granovetter in 1973. It is the primary basis in the analysis of social networks, especially in the process of linking the micro and macro entities in the sociological theory (Granovetter 1360). A more challenging theme that has come up with the emergence of network economics in AI is connected by six degrees of separation. The model postulates that anyone on the planet can link up to another person in six steps. It follows that when one is connected in a given dimension, there is a chance that there is more linkage than they can perceive.

The process of networking requires that the elements of strong and weak ties are both factored because even though they perform varying functions, they extend the potential beyond the reasonable reach. When formulating the theory, Mark Granovetter describes that there are various interpersonal theories that exist between disparate groups and that these ties constitute what holds different units of the society. Humans thus tend to multiplex relationships so that they represent weak ties to some of their connections and strong ties when they link with others. It is, therefore, comparable to a network multiplexer that has varying relations and that constitutes diverse types of signals.

According to the theorist, the relevance of these ties is perceived in social networking.  A strong link is thus viewed in economics as a group of geeks who are conversant with what is expected of them in a given field, such as clinical or science. They are always abreast of the information as it comes and is informed of what information is happening and going in the given field that they have specialized in. The subject of weak ties thus results from the apprehension that it is tenuous forms of relationship where they do not seem to be much conversant in clinical or on the particular scientific field that is being discussed. Despite being on the edges of influence, they are not informed of the advances in health and clinical science issues. It is worth noting that according to the theorist, these characters are crucial because they form the building of strong ties group together through the effect of bringing circles of contact in a central place and the process strengthening the existing relationships. They are important because as a result of their presence, it is possible to share the information on clinical issues and scientific trends between the different groups.

The other application of the theme of network economics is in the concepts of Artificial Intelligence (AI). The pertinent example is the case of Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs) where it is described as the powerful relation through the use of multivariate tools for dependence analysis. They have initially been applied in the neuroscience, but have recently gained media attention especially, in economics and finance. The significance of ANN therefore is that it can be used for modeling purposes and in the prediction of outcomes, because it uses machine language. These associations are relevant, because while the goal has always been to improve and replace the use of manual processes through automation, much had not been explored on the possibility of designing machines that demonstrate intelligence comparable to that of humans’. The realization that humans could as well multiply their human intelligence through artificial means has thus ended in major advancements in the civilized world. The concept of strength and weak ties is especially important in ensuring that bindings relationships are established that are long-lasting as it is the principle of this form of network. Thus, artificial intelligence has been of great advantage, because it has been possible to bring out the emotional quotient into machines with many appreciating the advancements. With the far-reaching applications that have been witnessed, it is intriguing to think of how much impact there will be in the coming decades and years.

SOURCES

Granovetter, Mark S. “The Strength of ‘Weak’ Ties.” American Journal of Sociology, 78, no. 6, 1973, pp. 1360–1380.