Monday, May 4, 2015

A geek network

I have noted before that many of the diagrams on the web purporting to show "evolution" actually show transformational evolution rather than variational evolution, as is done in biology and the historical social sciences (eg. Non-phylogenetic trees; Evolution and timelines; The evolutionary March of Progress in popular culture).

This diagram seems to be an improvement, however. Perhaps its geekiness is responsible for this?

This is an evolutionary network because it is rooted, at "Geekus Prime". You will note that it is a population network rather than strictly a phylogenetic network. That is, many of the internal nodes are labeled with extant taxa, so that both ancestors and their descendants appear. It is a network rather than a tree, because the "World of Warcraft Geek" is a hybrid between the "Dungeons and Dragons Geek" and the ancestor of the "Video Game Geek".

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