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Author Topic: Has the forum been less active the past few days, or is it just me?  (Read 273 times)
Scarlet, a person who craves an apple
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« on: September 19, 2018, 06:33:30 pm »

See title.
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Roblox
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« Reply #1 on: September 19, 2018, 06:58:25 pm »

I'm noticing it too. Sometimes, it'll take a few hours for another post to be made in some sections of the forums recently.
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Virginiá
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« Reply #2 on: September 19, 2018, 07:42:35 pm »

See title.

The past couple days have been really active, posts-wise:

https://uselectionatlas.org/FORUM/index.php?action=stats;expand=201809#201809

The Trump era has made Atlas much more active, but activity really spiked in December 2017 and hasn't let up since. This month will probably be another 53,000+ post/month.

More to your question - the past few days have been really active as well. Yesterday was just shy of 1,900 posts, which is a lot, and today might hit around 1,750 - 1,800.
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"I'm a whiner and I keep whining and whining until I win."
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« Reply #3 on: September 19, 2018, 08:11:06 pm »

^huh, guess its just perception then.
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Scarlet, a person who craves an apple
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« Reply #4 on: September 19, 2018, 08:22:54 pm »

^huh, guess its just perception then.
Maybe posts are just overly concentrated in megathreads?
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« Reply #5 on: September 19, 2018, 09:39:57 pm »

Could be that more people are posting in the actual election threads, rather than the general boards lately. I've noticed too, given I post mostly in general.
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« Reply #6 on: Today at 02:15:39 pm »

^huh, guess its just perception then.
Maybe posts are just overly concentrated in megathreads?
Yeah thats about it really.
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« Reply #7 on: Today at 02:48:45 pm »

It may just be on other boards too. For example, polling is picking up, so that is naturally going to drive up activity on poll-related boards.
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"I'm a whiner and I keep whining and whining until I win."
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« Reply #8 on: Today at 07:47:44 pm »

See title.

The past couple days have been really active, posts-wise:

https://uselectionatlas.org/FORUM/index.php?action=stats;expand=201809#201809

The Trump era has made Atlas much more active, but activity really spiked in December 2017 and hasn't let up since. This month will probably be another 53,000+ post/month.

More to your question - the past few days have been really active as well. Yesterday was just shy of 1,900 posts, which is a lot, and today might hit around 1,750 - 1,800.

It's pretty interesting to look at data like that, and how the amount of posts fluctuates. How come there's so many more predictions in 2004 and 2008 compared to more recent elections like 2016 and 2018?
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NOVA Green
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« Reply #9 on: Today at 10:24:28 pm »

See title.

The past couple days have been really active, posts-wise:

https://uselectionatlas.org/FORUM/index.php?action=stats;expand=201809#201809

The Trump era has made Atlas much more active, but activity really spiked in December 2017 and hasn't let up since. This month will probably be another 53,000+ post/month.

More to your question - the past few days have been really active as well. Yesterday was just shy of 1,900 posts, which is a lot, and today might hit around 1,750 - 1,800.

RE: Statistics Board---

What would be an interesting Metric to add, and should be easy enough to do on the back-end database, would be the add the total number of unique "guest views" by Date and Boards....

Many Atlas members forget sometimes that we are an "open forum", and frequently there are a much larger # of "lurkers" that are interested in checking out various data and analyses available *ONLY on ATLAS*

Reality is that these are our "external customers", that might not feel like actively contributing and going through the whole registration process, individuals "shy" about posting in what might seem like an extremely intimidating venue, those who are interested in arguably some of the most detailed American US Electoral discussions available on the internet, including "real time election results and analysis based upon a "crowd-sourcing" model, College Students that have access to Dave's "Pay Database" with a free pass for those attending educational institutions that have a business partnership agreement, foreign nationals interested in a more detailed tapestry of American Political Culture, and those who were linked here because search engine algorithms accidentally steered them towards Atlas.

I was a lurker for several Years before going through the process of becoming a member shortly before the '08 General Election sometime around Primary season for example....

Having a greater degree of visibility on our external customers use of the Forum, helps us collectively strengthen areas where we can improve the content and quality of our posts, while simultaneously move beyond the concept of Atlas as just another "chat-board for Political Geeks", into a transformative force where we are actors on the stage, rather than just mere spectators.

Focusing on our core strengths through data driven metrics helps us further refine where to allocate our collective resources in pursuit of that goal.

Additionally, as a side note, in the private sector where I have worked for 21+ Years as a 40+ Hr/Week worker, Metrics (Statistics in Atlas lingo) are intended to drive improvements, and usually upfront we try to identify in boardroom meetings "bogus metrics" that are interesting and sometimes important, from those which don't add real value nor drive continuous process improvement.

Personally, when I reviewed the statistics page for the first time today, I was struck by how relatively important the whole "Top Ten Posters" Metric was, essentially placing within the "Top Four Atlas Metric"....

Stuff like this is what feeds individual egos to post a ton of stuff early on in their Atlas career just to establish their "Atlas Street Cred", "name recognition", get some extra stars (Boy Scout / Girl Scout style), rather than get recognition simply for the quality of their posts regardless if it is their first post or their 5,001 Post.

"Most Time Online" is also a relatively Bogus Metric and what does it actually mean?

It's essentially almost akin to the "Top Ten Poster" Metric, in that it doesn't really tell us much at all, other than who has been "clocked" logging into Atlas the most....

My humble thought, is that we need to fundamentally re-imagine the whole Metrics gig and change the relative presentations of the Metrics...

Obviously we need to start with what are the most important metrics for the Collective Atlas community at the top (Including Non-Members), and put the least important metrics at the bottom (Top Posters, Time Logged Into Atlas, etc at the bottom)

1.) General Statistics are good as a top-line item, but it's extremely muddy, and doesn't even include charts of graphs, and there is no time-line associate to provide historical perspective....

2.) TOTAL MEMBERS and TOTAL INDIVIDUAL GUESTS should really have a top-line billing, since that tells us our broader "reach", and it needs to be tied to at minimum a Monthly level Metric, so we can assess the "Mountains and Valleys" over a broader timeline.

3.) TOTAL POSTS--- WTH does that even Mean and why is it important? Ok--- this is something that likely is best annualized from '03 > '18 etc...

4.) Users Online---- The only reason for this is for the Mods and Forum Owner to decrease access during peak periods of activity from guest accounts that might crash the Forum, or identify surges of activity that indicate interest in a particular topic (Such as a major election???)

5.) Most Online is interesting, so the "online metric" should obviously be separated, and again we need to see the member / guest breakdown... (Online might be a Metric best done in a "real-time" environment) where we have visibility to what threads are trending.... Again ONLINE based upon individual MEMBER/GUEST/TOTAL, shows us what our customers (Internal/External) are most interested in, and obviously we can create Monthly data sets that can identify trending tied to key political events.

6.) Top Boards---- These are obviously important, since it helps identify when we need to consolidate or increase activity... Still, I look at all this, and it's almost like a nothing-burger. It doesn't even identify the numbers associated with the boards (Sure it appears that this is likely a total number of posts, but how can one even calculate a % value when there isn't even a TOTAL NUMBER Huh)

My mind we need to find a way to separate the "fluff boards" (Forum Community, Fantasy Election) from the "serious" boards (Various Election Based Boards)... then we have the whole "all archived boards" and "election archive" number which curiously has exactly the same number....

This is Bogus data, since we have no way to separate the archived category....

7.) Interestingly enough the Metric at the bottom is perhaps one of the most interesting, but something that even most dedicated Atlas Posters aren't going to bother to scroll down and check out....

From my perspective this Metric should have virtually a top-line billboard assignment....

Now, the graphical presentation is so clumsy that it virtually loses any actual ability, in it's current format....

It should be easy enough to run top-line numbers in a graph based format with filter based categories to shift timelines as part a basic database package, since obviously these numbers were extracted from a database format or "pre-generated" report...

8.) This might be the wrong place for this post, but at some point, we have to figure out how to improve legacy based reporting templates, redesign the metrics to reflect the dramatic growth and spike of Atlas activity from a small "club" back in the days, to now becoming increasingly accessible to a much broader population.

I cringe looking at the current state of the Atlas "Statistics" / Metrics, when I know that we likely have some extremely easy fixes, tons of over-qualified, and under-employed individuals on Atlas, that would be more than happy to help with working on database technical items, once we start collectively defining:

A.) What Metrics are Important and how to prioritize?

B.) How to create graphical based formats, including historical time-lines to call out key data points on a consistent basis?

C.) What resources are available to drive this project, especially on the Technical Part of the House?

D.) Atlas is amazing, we have tons of qualified people that can do all sorts of stuff, and some of these changes might involve access to database packages that are currently limited to a handful of individuals? How can we take this project and move it from "Proto" to "Production" and still protect the integrity of the Atlas database when it comes to personally identifiable information???

We have tons of resources, tons of Tech Savvy members, many of whom might well be interested in helping with all sorts of solutions....

This Project doesn't need to rest solely on the hands of a small numbers of Mods....

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« Reply #10 on: Today at 11:04:02 pm »

@NOVA - Very ambitious!

Unfortunately the "views" counter for each thread/board is just a simple integer representing the count. There is also a setting that logs individual views too that might be enabled, but I don't think it logs Guest views. That would result in a lot of data.

It's pretty interesting to look at data like that, and how the amount of posts fluctuates. How come there's so many more predictions in 2004 and 2008 compared to more recent elections like 2016 and 2018?

Who knows! Maybe it was a bigger thing back then, and the thread was probably stickied too.
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"I'm a whiner and I keep whining and whining until I win."
   – Donald J. Trump. August 11th, 2015.
NOVA Green
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« Reply #11 on: Today at 11:45:06 pm »

@NOVA - Very ambitious!

Unfortunately the "views" counter for each thread/board is just a simple integer representing the count. There is also a setting that logs individual views too that might be enabled, but I don't think it logs Guest views. That would result in a lot of data.

It's pretty interesting to look at data like that, and how the amount of posts fluctuates. How come there's so many more predictions in 2004 and 2008 compared to more recent elections like 2016 and 2018?

Who knows! Maybe it was a bigger thing back then, and the thread was probably stickied too.

Sounds like a bit of a cop-out honestly....

There are basic database back-end means of easily creating customized reports, regardless of the database.

Otherwise, one must certainly wonder why Atlas is operating on a decrepit database application, that is long since past it's End-of-Lifecycle (EOL).

At some point, the lack of preventative maintenance (PM) on the database side of the House, will continue to snowball, creating increasing issues all along the Board.

We are no longer a Forum with a handful of members and larger numbers of guests, but rather a place with a dramatic increase of activity from '08 onwards that appears to be incapable of managing the basic fundamentals of what most Internet users expect of a "Modern" website....

What are your thoughts as to how we can move from where we are at currently to a future state, that more clearly aligns with the expectations of newer members, while simultaneously maintaining our "Old Skool" style?
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