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Last night I was lucky to be able to attend the latest actKM forum where Graham Durant-Law presented on Network Numerology. This presentation was part of Information Awareness Month in Australia.

“Numerology is the study of the purported divine, mystical or other special relationship between a count or measurement and life. The term is most often used in a derogatory sense. Network science is replete with numbers, algorithms and formulas. Often, to the uninitiated, these numbers are akin to numerology and represent a “black art” understood only by a few. In this presentation some of the more common measures used in Social Network Analysis will be demystified. However some numerological numbers will also be discussed. These include Dunbar’s Number and the lesser know Wellman’s Number, along with the Bernard-Kilworth Number and Wu’s Heuristic. It will be up to you to decide whether these numbers are real or a divine measure!”

A link to Graham’s paper can be found on his blog site and is well worth reading. Graham really emphasises how important it is to know what you are doing with Social Network Analysis – the new software available allows you to press all the buttons to get a visualisation of the network, but unless you understand the limitations and boundaries of the numbers you run a real risk of misinformation and misinterpretation.

I also feel very privileged to work with Graham under the HyperEdge Pty Ltd badge. I am constantly on a learning curve but never bored as the SNA space is just fascinating.

I am thrilled that the latest project I have been working on with a number of other consultants has now been published.

True Tales of the Trout Cod has absorbed the last 9 months of my life and has been probably the most enjoyable project I have worked on in a very long time.  Will Trueman (author) has written the most amazing book.  He has spent a considerable part of his life studying the Trout Cod in the Murray-Darling Basin. He compiled the science, photographic evidence with the oral histories to match, and newspaper articles from the National Library of Australia’s Trove database to show us what native fish existed and no longer exist in the lower Murray-Darling Basin.

This is the best example of science communicated through story that I have seen.  It has been a great privilege to work with Will Trueman (the amazing author), Siwan Lovett (Director of the Australian River Restoration Centre), Richard Snashall (our brilliant film maker), Vikki Bell (our wonderful editor and indexer), Allison Mortlock (our graphic designer), Melissa Gabelle (our wonderful web designer) and Heleena Bamford (our fantastic MDBA project manager).

I have to admit to being a bit biased as my favourite part of the project was Will telling us about the importance of the National Library’s Trove database. The video link for this can be found here.  Although the story of how the Campaspe got it’s name is the most memorable – I cannot see the name Campaspe without thinking of his story. You will have to read the chapter to find out why !!

I hope you can take the time to explore the new web site and learn so much about the native fish of the Murray-Darling Basin – I feel I have learnt so much from Will and now see our river system with fresh eyes and find I am keen to see our rivers and streams restored and preserved.

Nerida