Monday, August 27, 2007

Links and Things

  • is the Flickr equivalent for statistics. One finds all kinds of charts and rankings, data and graphs, sorted by fields (Economics, Entertainment, Health, Politics, Science, Society, Sports, Technology, Miscellaneous). Usually with sources, though the graphics aren't always that great. E.g. here we have physics publications, USA in contrast to 'all other' . You can also find evidence that Tuesdays and Fridays are the worst days to drive in LA, that the divorce rate in the USA is more than twice as high as in the EU, and the beginning terrorist can learn fatalities by tactic.

    Besides the general entertainment value the site offers rankings and options for discussion which I find nice. However, right now the database seems to be rather small, but this could become a pretty useful source of information.

  • Have your towels ready! Userfriendly explains the dark void! For more info, see here. (Thanks to Andi).

  • Checking which Google searches lead visitors to this blog always gives me the giggles. My favorite from the last week was 'Energy of the average fart' (which leads here).

  • A couple of weeks ago I've signed up for Google Analytics, which has some more features than SiteMeter. Among other things, it ranks the amount of visitors who came via Google search by the search tag. Most come here searching for 'Backreaction' (good), the second rank is hold by 'First day of fall' (weird), the third rank is 'Lee Smolin', directly followed by 'Peter Woit' (no comment).

  • The results of the Back-Reaction poll (the first!) from Aug 17 "I read science blogs because...": A total of 149 people (to date) voted. Most of them checked the option "because I am interested and learn a lot" (42.3 %), followed after a gap by "for news and gossip" (28.2 %) and "for the general entertainment value" (12. 1 %). As little as 3 people admitted on reading science blogs mainly to distribute their own believes. And nobody who ended up here by accident stayed long enough to vote.

    Overall, I think this test-poll went fairly well, though some more participants would have been nice. Maybe I should try to come up with a more interesting question.

  • Quotation of the week:

    "We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them."

    ~Albert Einstein


  1. How many visitors do you generally get?

  2. summertime is not a good time to hold polls

  3. Hi Rillian,

    The average is currently around 800, more during weekdays, peak on Mondays and a significant drop on Saturdays. It used to be somewhat more until July (~1100), but as Anonymous indicates, summertime is noticeably slow.

    The interesting thing about Google Analytics is that it counts returning versus new visitors, and interestingly the amount of returning visitors is higher than I thought (around 50%, but I should wait some more weeks to gather data I guess). Another thing that's good to know (xhtml, css, etc) is the browsers people use, which is about 45% Firefox and 45% Internet Explorer each, it's only 6% that use Safari.



  4. speaking of bloggy things, whatever happend to CV's template?

  5. "We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them." Albert Einstein.

    "If stupidity got us into this mess, then why can't it get us out?" The Bush administration.

    "It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn't matter how smart you are. If it doesn't agree with experiment, it's wrong," Richard P. Feynman.

    Compassionately elevate the middle above the ends! Discovery is not funded (no PERT chart). The next decimal place with no risk of venture is funded, or no decimal place at all (string theory). Embrace the power of the least publishable bit.

  6. CV must be trying out wordpress?

  7. weren't they running on wordpress all the time? I thought it looked like a customized wp template?

  8. yes, maybe you are right, and customized as well.

    I just noticed that if you were to opt for a new template, things would be a little messed up until you rearranged things once again, like

    Somebody needed a change?

  9. Back to normal:)

    That's better.



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