Heading Out

Seeking the winds that help to sail on Shakespeare's tide.

Friday, August 27, 2004

Are we Curious?

Hmm ! Jimbo has installed a Site Meter, whatever that is. Do I want to know who comes here, or maybe who doesn't ? Some years ago we put a meter on one the sites that deal with what I do (in the limited time between blogging). I watched it for about a month, and it was ego-massaging to see who came for a while, but then I stopped and while it may still be there, I have forgotten how to access it.

If there were a lot of folk it would change what I write, I think, since this is a quasi-amusement on what "rings my chimes" every day and so I can with an expected small, though fondly thought of, audience, feel free to be honest and unrestricted. On the other hand if the meter said that no-one came would I feel hurt and rejected ? Could I use it to work out who these fascinating, though pseudonymous folk are that I drop in on, and who in turn visit here ? Do I want to ? Well I bookmarked the site-meter site just in case I change my mind, but for now, I have no idea who you are, dear visitor, and I am not looking. (Not I hasten to add that I mind if others check to see how often I turn up - like the bad penny).

Progress report, I did not do a good first class, since we had to get too many things organized, but the time is set, the notes from last year are posted and we are ready for serious progress next week. I am going to go in tomorrow to rewrite next weeks notes and need to change a couple or more lectures because of a change in class makeup and interests.

We finally found out what was wrong with the demonstration. To keep this vague the answer was two degrees - which as an angle is quite small, but unfortunately enough. There was a hint that, having found that, we might get more funding - but I am not totally optimistic, having been here before. The two white papers went off to Michigan this afternoon, and now all I have left are the article and the two white papers for Indiana. Did I mention that I leave for Europe next Saturday ? So I am going to try pre-recording the lectures for the following week as short segments and posting them to Blackboard. For two lectures it is not that much effort and I can correct if it is too much of a disaster. But for tonight - the wine is Beni di Batasiolo's 1998 Barolo, and while I wouldn't really recommend it, it is passable. Goodnight, whoever you are !


At 5:08 PM, Blogger anbruch said...

Yes, I resisted putting a Site Meter up for a long time and I'm thinking of deinstalling it now that I've learned what I wanted to: I wasn't interested in measuring the traffic to my site (though certainly I can't deny the ego-gratification!) so much as determining what sorts of information the site meter was gathering. Basically how much of my identity was I leaving behind at other sites with meters. I was surprised at just how much I could figure out simply by looking at domains and referring pages. Since I didn't really care to uncover anyone's identity I didn't follow this angle very far but I did notice high correlations between referring sites and certain .edu domains, which, had I pursued the question, would have allowed me to make inferences about institutional affiliations. It was at that moment that I set my Site Meter to the highest level of protection—to protect my visitors' identities not mine.


At 7:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I only use the basic free service of sitemeter. I think it can be useful for different things. People who may write specifically to entertain may be interested in hits. Also, if someone has not mastered trackback, and doesn't advise in comments on your site that they linked you, you may not know it. This can sometimes lead to discovering a blog's existence. In addition, many bloggers don't tend to comment as excessively as some of the other loud mouths (like myself) but read faithfully, and I like to know this because I'm more than happy to read them faithfully and blab about since I've never believed in the commenting tat-for-tat anyway.

But I admit, I personally have plugged in and unplugged the sitemeter numerous times.


At 8:57 AM, Blogger ~profgrrrrl~ said...

I put it on there at first because I saw that all the cool kids had one. Then I got interested in how people got to my blog...just out of curiosity. And I found some blogs I like to read in that way. I don't actually care about site traffic ... especially since I really write as my own form of therapy AND have some regular commenters anyway. I might be uncomfortable if there were a lot of site traffic (whatever "a lot" would be).

Personally, I think tracking back who someone is would just be entirely too much effort. Not sure how many people are posting from their .edu domains. I've assumed the .edus that show up in my stats are just as likely lurkers as they are posters.

At 2:25 PM, Blogger anbruch said...

Yeah, it's the correlation of domain names and referring pages that allows identity to emerge—if you wanted to spend the time tracking it down. Generally, it would be easier to do it with access to site meters from several different sites, since then you could determine a bit easier whether certain referring pages tended to be associated with particular domains.



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