Feeds

Relationships like atomic nuclei, says physicist

Weak partnerships decay. Sigh

Bridging the IT gap between rising business demands and ageing tools

A physicist has built a computer model of the dating world, which he says shows people behave like decaying atomic nuclei, when it comes to finding love.

Richard Ecob, a postgraduate student, noticed similarities between the histories of people's relationships and the decay histories of atomic nuclei, the BBC reports. For example, he said, the probability of a person having been in two relationships matches the probability of a nucleus having decayed twice.

Inspired by this observation, Ecob went on to develop a computer model of a social network in which virtual people were looking for their perfect partners. These "software singles" were each allocated interests, which they would be looking to match with those of any potential partner.

The model suggested that those who have lots of partners don't do better than those who only have a few. It also found that the serial daters could end up making things better for everyone, breaking up weak partnerships so that each person can move on to something better.

Ecob, who developed the model as part of his masters research degree, thinks the same model could be applied to business relationships. He is working with his supervisors to develop it further.

Is this phenomenon behind the decline of the nuclear family (groan)? Is it proof that physicists should never be trusted to unentagle complex social situations, or is it just a daft story, perfectly suited to an August afternoon? We may never know. ®

Mobile application security vulnerability report

More from The Register

next story
Bad back? Show some spine and stop popping paracetamol
Study finds common pain-killer doesn't reduce pain or shorten recovery
Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 claimed lives of HIV/AIDS cure scientists
Researchers, advocates, health workers among those on shot-down plane
Mwa-ha-ha-ha! Eccentric billionaire Musk gets his PRIVATE SPACEPORT
In the Lone Star State, perhaps appropriately enough
SMELL YOU LATER, LOSERS – Dumbo tells rats, dogs... humans
Junk in the trunk? That's what people have
All those new '5G standards'? Here's the science they rely on
Radio professor tells us how wireless will get faster in the real world
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.