Wk 10-Art Activity- Fiber Art Social Network

Fun project this week both in class and at home. I got to put up my little node on the wall early on in the creation of the web. I went downstairs for a bit to interview an artist for my artist conversation. It was interesting to come back and see the progression of the project, and the huge number of strings that connected me to so many other people in the class. But as for the questions, (1) I definitely find the term social network applying to my everyday life, since I really don’t use social media enough to make stable relationships with anyone online. I use it more to communicate occasionally with people I meet outside the web. I certainly have a network of friends, family, and acquaintances in real life. I tried to map out every single fairly close relationship I had, and I couldn’t fit them all on a single page. It was even harder when I tried to connect the individuals to each other. It looked less like a web and more like someone dropped a ball of yarn. (2) Dunbar’s number is an interesting generalization, but of course it wont apply to everyone the same way. I think a maximum of 150 people you are close to is a fairly reasonable number. I don’t go that high, but I am actually closer than I thought. I consider a fairly close relationship to be meeting and talking with an individual at least once a week. So with that I actually have quite a few relationships from church, school, and home. Still not at 150, but closer. I think significantly less time spent with a person would weaken the relationship, and since people only have so much free time, then 150 is a good limit before relationships start to fragment. (3) I think the term Facebook friends is misleading, since for me friends implies a close relationship. Having thousands of friends on Facebook really only means that you make a lot of acquaintances. You will probably only be close with a handful of that group. I have 230 Facebook friends, but I am only close to probably 20 of those people. The people I am close to are my friends I see once a week at least, my lab partner, my family, some church friends, my boyfriend, and a few other scattered relationships. For everyone else, I have a weaker relationship. Some people are old high school friends, teachers, family members from San Diego I only see at family gatherings, and the like. I don’t check in with them enough to build a close bond. (4) There wasn’t anything extraordinarily surprising about my node. I had a few more connections than I thought, mostly red strings, but a few white as well. It was fun to see the connections as physical strings though. (5) My personal number I would originally think would be small, maybe around 10. But when I think of all the people I know, my stepbrothers, cousins, church friends, etc., that I have a fairly close relationship with, I would imagine that number is probably about 50. For me 50 is a good number of close relationships to have. Its about what I can handle with school and work responsibilities, and leaves me with many people to be close to. (6) I have more friends on Facebook than actual friends, but not by a lot. My relationship to these other people I stated a bit. I know them from school, sometimes through a closer friend, or they are family I only occasionally see. I think these weak ties will be important when I get out more into the world. Currently I haven’t gotten much from my own weak ties, other than the occasional old family picture or fun memory I shared with my high school friends. Anyway, I made my own Fiber Art Social Network a bit more unique. I only did the people I was really close to to save space. I used an octopus for the base, and each arm represents a different way I am connected to each group. Fun one to draw.

-Hannah Adams



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