Lately I was wondering whether BioStar is losing its appeal or if it is rather a subjective impression I am having about BioStar. My question: is the BioStar fading?
My own objective stab at this can be found here: http://joachimbaran.wordpress.com/2011/03/07/biostar-fading/
UPDATE (March 2012): I have redone the analysis and posted the results as "BioStar: Is the BioStar fading? An Annual Follow-Up." http://joachimbaran.wordpress.com/2012/03/11/biostar-second-analysis/
UPDATE (March 2013): This year I have added more charts to my analysis and posted the results again on my blog as "Uh-oh, Biostar: Three Years of User Metrics Analysis" http://joachimbaran.wordpress.com/2013/03/15/uh-oh-biostar/
UPDATE (March 2013, follow up to criticism): It has been pointed out that I include too many other post types besides questions/answers, which influences my analysis and statistics. Having also taken input from the Biostar API now, I re-ran the data mining script and it turns out that the web-crawler already ignores non-question posts. There are only 36 data points for "Forum" (type id 6) Biostar posts, but about 47000 question/answer related data points. In other words: the new Planet or blog posts on Biostar do not influence my analysis.
UPDATE (April 2014): The fourth annual analysis has been posted. It is the first time that I incorporated data from the Biostar RESTful API. See: "Analyzing the Biostar: Fourth Anniversary" http://joachimbaran.wordpress.com/2014/04/08/biostar_analysis_4th_year/
If anything, your results show to me it is going very strong! It is expected that these statistics go down. Just like any great doing stock fund will go down as more people start joining in. And, some plots do not even seem to show a slope significantly from zero; one in fact seems to go up, despite the slope. Moreover, your plot do not take into account seasonal aspects. We just had x-mas. Try comparing the last 7 months, with the same months a year ago. Also, include plots like number of active users, etc, to get a full picture.
it would be good to compare this data against other stackexchange websites. Maybe some of the ones listed here: http://stackexchange.com/sites
+1 for taking the time of collecting the data, carrying it out and presenting the results freely.
There is relatively strong support to convert this to a community wiki (see comments to lh3 below). Are there any objections to doing this?
+1 for quantifying data!
I have redone the analysis and posted the results in my blog again: http://joachimbaran.wordpress.com/2012/03/11/biostar-second-analysis/
When you first posted about this supposed fading (2 years ago, April 2011) the site had 1,800 questions and 5,200 answers, 8,000 comments. By today (April 2013) we've faded to 9,000 questions, 19,000 answers, 33,000 comments. Since last March we had 465,000 unique visitors (as measured by Google) the most ever recorded year-over-year.
I think that the success of a Q&A is measured primarily in the amount of knowledge that is distributed via the site combined with the rate of providing new advice. That could be anything: an answer, a comment, a request for clarification or even a post closing for duplication. As long as the front page is mostly green we're doing really well.
This is one of my favorite threads. I will take this opportunity to post yearly snapshot numbers on content:
April 8: 2014: 10,336 users have contributed 93,655 posts distributed as 14,187 questions, 27,077 answers and 48,455 comments
The site has 34,739 registered users that created 242,051 posts These are distributed as 44,767 questions, 60,002 answers and 133,902 comments.
Thanks for all the feedback! It would have been interesting to carry out more statistics on this topic, but unfortunately I did not have more time to investigate this. Thanks, again.
Interesting. A lot more analysis could be performed if biostar was a choice in this explorer tool: http://data.stackexchange.com/
+1 For the used of R and Ruby - a truly powerful combination.
+1 For the use of R and Ruby - a truly powerful combination
Hi Joachim, your analysis is flawed, and several people, including me, have told you about that. You are in fact jumping to conclusions based on a declining trend in the cumulative vote-score based on the age of the question. The effect you see and - falsely - interpret as a decline, is in fact expected and would be observable for any cumulative quantity (at constant rate). To present something informative, you would have to plot "the average number of votes/answers per month or per time window per question".
thank you (2014 )
All your posts are now private?