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[liberationtech] Flaming on the List? vs. Information Theory's application to the Social Decision Process.!

Peter Lindener lindener.peter at
Mon Feb 21 15:34:58 PST 2011

    Rohan -

    I catch your excitement about the Win Edge directed Graphs "information"
content...   But I think when you mange to take in what our paper
illiterates by way of formal algebraic equivalency....   You might see that,
Coinciding Cyclical Majority's are the product of the Information Loss
associated with Condorcet's Pairwise Voting Influence Maximization over each
independent pairwise combination... and thus one can conclude its a form of
distortion in the vote tallying process..... an unavoidable (arrows
impossibility) side effect of any game theoretic
influence maximized tallying process.   Then the concept of Top as well as
Bottom Cycle sets will prove critical in our proposed optimal resolution to
the Coinciding Cyclical Majority problem....  More on this once the first
introductory paper has had a chance to settle in.....  I know it take a bit
of time to get one's head wrapped around this problem, even after one comes
to see why coinciding cyclical majorities can exist


On Mon, Feb 21, 2011 at 1:56 PM, Rohan Dixit <rohandixit86 at> wrote:

> hey Peter,
> yes- ((n^2)/2 - n) = n(n-1)/2. I'm still struck by the fact that the
> resulting network, cycles or no, looks a lot like a *directed graph* or
> directed network from "graph theory".
> The assumption is that cycles imply "irrationality" or some other flaw in
> the voting paradigm. But I'm pointing out, being a newcomer to this field,
> that could be interpreted as a directed network, similar to a social network
> a la Twitter. Each politician is then like a node in Twitter network, where
> her "followers" are politicians preferred less in binary rankings by voters,
> and those she "follows" are politicians preferred more. Analyzing this
> network for in-degree hubs and community groupings could lead us to
> automatically determine seniority (as is currently doled out by, for
> example, membership and rank on important Congressional sub-committees) and
> "real" party affiliation as we normally view in terms of
> "Democratic/Republican", for example.
> Maybe you can explain your paper more conversationally here given the
> context of the above ideas. Thank you
> R
> On Mon, Feb 21, 2011 at 4:30 PM, Peter Lindener <lindener.peter at>wrote:
>> Hi
>>     Rohan -
>>     You mention (n^2/2 - n) ... I gather you ment (n^2/2 - n/2) =
>> n(N-1)/2..
>> In any case,   Ive figured out how to keep the computational loading
>> associated with Ranked Choice Ballot Tallying such that n is the number of
>> candidates (policy alternatives), mentioned on each voters ballot, no the
>> total number of alternatives being Tallyed...
>>    In a 32bit address machine, memory space will permit tallying an
>> alternative space of aprox 16K ( often leaf nodes of a document version
>> system )...  64 bit machines would possibly permit larger choice spaces....
>> So while Memory requirements grow
>> as you mention by the square,   Tallying computations can still be
>> contained quite well over effectively wide open choice spaces....   I will
>> cover more of how to do this
>> in a practical system later.
>>    _peter
>> On Mon, Feb 21, 2011 at 12:34 PM, Rohan Dixit <rohandixit86 at>wrote:
>>> hey Peter,
>>> Thanks for posting your paper- I am currently reading it through. The
>>> pair-wise ranking rapidly gets to be a lot of comparisons (as the number of
>>> comparisons increases linearly, the number of needed rankings increases as
>>> (n^2/2 - n)). But it's interesting especially in that the result is a
>>> "directed" network (or graph) for every *election*, with an edge leading
>>> from one candidate to another if the voters preferred that candidate over
>>> his competitor. Can detailed network structure like that be used to, say,
>>> organize the U.S. congress pecking order of committee chairs and seniority?
>>> I'm pretty new to voting methodologies and, as I'm sure many would agree,
>>> it's an interesting topic that deserves more scrutiny. Regarding the
>>> Anonymous posting/flame, I'll just say: It takes only a few bad apples to
>>> sour the punch, and it would be a shame to allow the equivalent to occur on
>>> this list-serve-- it's the source of a lot of great crosspollination of
>>> ideas and often diametrically opposed viewpoints. Stick around.
>>> Cheers
>>> Rohan
>>> On Mon, Feb 21, 2011 at 2:36 PM, Peter Lindener <
>>> lindener.peter at> wrote:
>>>>    Dear fellow Lib-Techys -
>>>>     I don't want place a damper on robust discussion of real issues
>>>> regarding the critical need for transparency of Government from a more
>>>> Information Theoretic point of view.... That is.. If government is to be
>>>> effectively regulated, It kind of goes with out saying that the true nature
>>>> of that government, by necessity would need to be properly visible to those
>>>> who are doing the regulation.
>>>>    Then, Stanford tends to be a place where fairly bright people, tend
>>>> to cover topics in more thoughtful ways.... and the "On Anonymous"
>>>> thread seems to be a bit more charged than truly leaves me feeling
>>>> comfortable.....
>>>>   The topic I bring to this thread, The nature of Information Theory's
>>>> relationship to the very definition of genuin democracy, and the Internet
>>>> era ramifications,  Is in deed (for some) a seemingly charged topic.....
>>>> mostly because it promises to profoundly reshape our socio-political
>>>> landscape.  On the other hand, It is the intelect, and inclination towards
>>>> very thoughtful, mutually respecting discussion that is apt to be the reason
>>>> most all of us have subscribed to this list.
>>>>    My own preference is that if there is a conflict going on between
>>>> someone on the list and "Anonymous", that dragging the conflict into
>>>> Stanford's more thoughtful community for discussion should be done with
>>>> hesitation....   I value the possibility that those choosing to think more
>>>> deeply about how Information as well as Game theory may come to profoundly
>>>> shape our world in the internet era,  Thus I feel it would be a true shame
>>>> for this list to instead be taken over by those who would might just be
>>>> wanting to flame about there already established conflict on the web..
>>>>    Did any one see my Intro titled "Lib-tech list Intro, Information
>>>> Theoretic Democracy..."
>>>> I tend to be a bit dryer in my analysis of things....  prioritization of
>>>> edges in cyclical ranked pairwise majority's,   probability density
>>>> functions representing Voter uncertainty over wide open Ranked Choice spaces
>>>> resolved from crowed sourced distillation process of the very best
>>>> thinking...and the like.
>>>> I cherish the privilege of also enjoying and being part of Stanford's
>>>> intellectual community.
>>>>     It would be great if someone were to respond with some sense of a
>>>> welcome response.
>>>>     -Peter
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