Saturday, January 02, 2010

Most popular posts in 2009

The most popular of last year's posts on this blog were:

1) a discussion and illustration of the relative sizes of star types and the solar system's planets and moons;
2) an overview of Data Provisioning, Karen Heath's proposal for new generation business intelligence and data warehousing (now moved to my technical blog);
3) Some words on Ellie Greenwich, the 1960s songwriter who died last year (with a discography lacking in Wikipedia);
4) Evolution and the eritherium, an odd elephant relative from the early days of the mammal;
5) An overview of BI Survey 8, the annual analysis of the market and use of Business Intelligence tools;
6) The music of the revered New Zealand new wave band Toy Love, with a comprehensive discography;
7) An insightful comparison of Madonna's and Van Halen's touring contracts, after Madonna's stage collapsed last year;
8) An appreciation of the duo  Georgie Fame and Alan Price, two British musicians of the 1960s who collaborated in the 1970s (again, with discography);
9) A discussion of corporate ethics and the underhanded actions of the Australian corporation James Hardie, who tried to escape their obligations over asbestos poisoning;
10) A discussion of the eventual fate of the Beatles' songwriting catalogue, and royalties.

So it would seem that the most viewed posts were music-related (comprising half the most popular discussions), followed by business intelligence (two pieces), then general science, evolution, and corporate politics.

That may be a bit misleading.  In fact the top post, on planets, moons and stars, positively swamped everything else.  And like some of my posts, the only reason it arose was my personal curiosity: to improve my understanding with a bit of research.

Let's look at overall traffic last year, for all posts since 2006.  The story is a little different:
1) The abovementioned  discussion of moons, planets and stars;
2) The evolution of milk (simply because it included a photo of a platypus egg);
3) IBM's evolution as a software and computer services company, from its earlier incarnation as a mainframe computer manufacturer (the traffic came mostly from people asking the question: 'What does IBM do?');
4) Vigrass and Osbourne: sparkling forgotten pop music from the early 70s, with discography and links;
5) The giant tube worm: an evolutionary oddity;
6) The relationship between handgun ownership and homicide in different coutries (most people were seeking statistics on gun ownership around the world);
7) A discussion of the breakup of Gondwana and the formation of  New Zealand, in the context of the discovery of an extinct egg-laying mammal in New Zealand (the SB mammal, or waddling mouse);
8) A discussion of the evolutionary significance of heterochrony (although it's possible people were just looking for a picture of an axlotl);
9) About Harry Dean Stanton's haunting rendition of Cancion Mixteca (with lyrics and translation);
10) How to solve the issue of translating type varchar to type real in SQL Server.

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