I used Google Analytics to track the activity on the blog, so I have some idea of what's going on out there. I figure you might like a peak into some of those numbers.
I just ran the numbers of the last 30 days (Dec. 28-Jan.27) against the same time last year and found that visits over the period jumped 34%. More interesting still is that a readers are spending an average of 1:34 on the site today vs. :34 on the site a year ago. Beyond these numbers, things get fuzzy.
For example, the site tracks "absolute unique visitors," but that number can't be right because it is in the 400-500 range. I don't flatter myself. Further, most of you out there are operating on a dynamic IP through your ISP, so every time it changes your IP, you become a "new" visitor. The other fudge factor here is the growth of RSS feeds. If you use an RSS reader, the reader gets the site once for you and anyone else who subsribes, so it underreports visitors. On the other hand, it may check the site a lot more (I don't know), so it may overreport pageviews.
The fuzzy data isn't all useless, however. There is a rise in the raw number of visitors and, more interestingly, in the "loyalty" of visitors - the number of times the same visitor comes back. Last year 52% of visitors visited just once. This year, it's down to 42%. At the other side of the scale, there is an average of 7% growth in each category of loyal visitors: 26-50, 51-100, 101-200 (# of visits. )
Hope you enjoyed that. If not, it's back to fun tomorrow.