The Year In Review: Part 3 (The Blog)

As this small space of the blogosphere enters its 22nd month of existence, I am pleased to note its influence is growing by leaps in bounds.  In short order, I expect to wield enough power to completely revolutionize the cycling world.

Then again, perhaps I’ll just write a few articles on the cycling rides I take and call it good.

I’ve mentioned elsewhere that this blog has been a great source of information and entertainment for me.  I get from it far more than I put into it, and that is because of you, Dear Reader.  What I didn’t realize when I started the blog was that I was entering into a worldwide cycling conversation.  People would provide helpful/interesting/amusing/encouraging comments on my posts and I would then investigate their blogs.  And their blog’s links.  And the links from those blogs, etc…

You get the idea – lots of links, lots of reading, lots of comments on what I read.  I learned a heck of a lot and was immensely entertained in the process.  Thank you for that.

But enough about YOU, what about ME?  Well, in order to talk about me I find it necessary to talk about you some more.  There are all sorts of metrics which describe how people are interacting with this blog, including the total number of visitors, where the visitors come from and what they are viewing.

How Many And From Where?  About 29,000 of you visited the site this year, roughly the equivalent the entire population of Forrest City, Arkansas, stopping by for a look-see.  It’s a very humbling notion that 80 people a day will stop by even for a few seconds to see what sort of drivel I am going on about.

Note: My WordPress Visitor Counter says 29,000 visited in 2011 while my Clustrmap utility says the number is closer to 15,000.  I’m not sure what the source of the discrepency is.  Perhaps the WordPress counter includes every page view and the Clustrmap counter includes only unique visitors.  I’m not sure of the reason, so naturally I will use the higher number as the official count!

Domestic Numbers.  As one might expect from a blog written by someone in Virginia, the majority of visitors are from the USA, particularly the state of Virginia.  California and Maryland have carved out solid #2 and #3 positions, respectively, but there is an exciting four-way race for fourth place between Texas, Missouri, New York, and Illinois.  Wyoming, you’re looking kinda weak.

International Numbers.  On the international front, the UK has built a seemingly insurmountable lead, with Canada edging out Australia for 2nd place early in the year.  I guess my 2010 trip to Canberra could only entertain my Australian audience for so long.  France leads the non-English speaking countries, although I suspect a certain Canadian expatriot is greatly aiding their cause.  India tops the list of non-English, non-European countries with 140 visits.  Nicely done, India!  And after calling them out for failing to visit a single time in 2010, I would be remiss if I failed to note Russia’s emergence on the board with 34 visits.  Well done, Russia.

For further details, see the ClustrMap utility on the right side of the screen.

Top Posts.  Naturally, these skew toward the older posts.  I am surprised to see just how popular some of my 2010 posts remain.  Google is an amazing thing and it consistently dredges up my posts in response to certain search queries.  In keeping with the 2011 theme, I’ve restricted the list to only those articles written this year.

1.  Why I’m Not Cool: Part 5 In A Continuing Series (319 views).  An in-depth discussion of the propriety of using Camelbaks while sitting atop a bicycle.

2.  Vint Hill Farms (275 views).  A jaunt to an abandoned Army base and my reflections on its role in WWII through the Cold War.

3.  Cycling In Tampa (212 views).  I escaped to Florida in January.  This is my story.

4.  My Running Problem (165 views).  Where I admit to achieving a cardiovascular workout by means other than biwheeled locomotion.

5.  My Photo Shoot (156 views).  In which my image is artfully captured by a professional photographer, aka my daughter.

My Favorite Posts.  FINALLY, I get to talk only about me!  For what it is worth, these are my favorite posts (that weren’t already mentioned elsewhere in these recaps) from 2011:

1.  A Worldwide Cycling Snapshot.  This group project worked out quite well, thanks to everyone who participated.

2.  Cycling And Philosophy.  I may actually have thought of something here.  That happens so rarely that this post vaults to Number 2 on my list.

3.  Cycling With Roger.  Where someone actually visits my home county and asks to go on a ride.  And he’s not a mass murderer or anything like that – he’s actually quite nice!

4.  The Blog Post About My Post On Another Blog.  My first guest blog post on Bike Noob was a major stepping stone to my massive upswing in popularity, at least in my own mind.

5.  My Half-Baked Theory On The Relative Perils Of Cycling.  I make an attempt to develop a “Unified Field Theory” of cycling challenges and provide the results to you free of charge.

6.  Cycling And Politics.  My musings as to why riding a bicycle automatically makes you a liberal (written from the conservative perspective).

Conclusion.  If you have made it to the very end of this three-part end of year review, pat yourself on the back.  It’s not quite a century ride, but it is definitely an endurance event worthy of recognition.  As always, I thank you for your rapt attention and very helpful/interesting/amusing/encouraging comments.  Keep ’em coming.  As long as you do, I’ll try to find something to rant about.

See you in 2012!

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13 thoughts on “The Year In Review: Part 3 (The Blog)

  1. Good on you Steve. This is an excellent blog and you are an entertaining writer. I hope to spend more time on my Blog this year – I’m optimistic that I’ll get to spend more time on the water. I’m writing this one from Rome, so you’ll register a hit from Italy.

    • Thanks, Joel. The Italians can use all the help they can get. Here’s hoping that you return to old form in 2012 and are sneeking up on the English waterfowl with great regularity. I am mindful that this blog is entirely based on your example and I remain very grateful for that!

  2. Hmm. Your blog stats for the year are nearly identical to mine. I wonder if WordPress uses an algorithm something like this:

    If blog topic = cycling
    then yearly visits = 29k
    else
    yearly visits = 120k

    You never know…..

    • Very interesting, indeed. Perhaps all the data is randomly generated. Maybe even your avatar! Maybe I’m just sitting here talking to myself. MAYBE EVEN I AM FICTITIOUS!!!

      This is getting too metaphysical for me. I’m going to go sit with my pretend wife for a while and calm down.

  3. Rant away, Steve! When I can’t think of anything to write about on my blog I can always take heart that there are others like you who have some creativity. It gives me hope..not to mention good ideas to steal!

    And I’m glad I could contribute in my own small way to your French stats. I’ll do my best to keep us on top in 2012.

    • Merci mon ami et bon chance en 2012. J’espère que c’est la meilleure année jamais!

      And that’s as far as my college French can take me. Mercifully, you write in English and I can enjoy your excellent posts without racking my brain with a tanslation book by my side!

      • Bloody he’ll! He speaks French as well! You have to pop up to La Belle Province here in Quebec and practice your language skills. Plenty of good eating and you’ve seen a lot of the riding that will welcome you!

        Happy New Year Steve and to all your followers!

      • “Speaks French” is probably too strong a term, James, although it has gotten me by on a few occasions in Haiti and other odd places. My boss just returned from a business trip to Quebec City, where he had a great dinner at The Citadel and took pictures of a store called “F— Le Mode.” Naturally, I provided the translation! 🙂

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