Universe Today Stats for January and February

internet-of-things-2

Good news, folks! It seems that the traffic report came in for the previous two months from Universe Today. And in my haste, I forgot to publish them. But luckily, there are no deadlines on a blog, just chances to catch up. How’s everybody doing? Oh, and I should also mention that my stint working with Green Tree Recycling is done for now, so there will be more time in the near future for posts like these. 🙂

In any case, things have changed over at Universe Today lately in terms of format. Basically, the managers wanted to do fewer publications a month overall and focus on those that were likely to draw more of a crowd. This means that the total number of articles I got to do for January/February was less than in previous months, but that didn’t seem to hurt viewership that much.

In fact, February has been my best month so far, with a record-topping 282,176 views! Check out the total stats below:

January:

1/1/2015 2015 Expected to be a Record-Breaking Year for Soyuz-2 Workhorse 1965
1/2/2015 Rogue Star HIP 85605 on Collision Course with our Solar System, but Earthlings Need Not Worry 17554
1/6/2015 Exoplanet-Hunting TESS Satellite to be Launched by SpaceX 1161
1/6/2015 Japan’s Akatsuki Spacecraft to Make Second Attempt to Enter Orbit of Venus in December 2015 2317
1/9/2015 New Mission: DSCOVR Satellite will Monitor the Solar Wind 886
1/13/2015 Faster-Than-Light Lasers Could “Illuminate” the Universe 36082
1/13/2015 One of the Milky Way’s Arms Might Encircle the Entire Galaxy 10543
1/16/2015 Some of the Best Pictures of the Planets in our Solar System 25777
1/16/2015 Elon Musk Releases Dramatic Imagery of Mostly Successful Falcon 9 1st Recovery Attempt, Hard Landing on Drone Ship 9009
1/30/2015 Exploring the Universe with Nuclear Power 21687
Total Views 126981

February:

Which Planets Have Rings?  2/5/2015  8910
What Could Explain the Mysterious Ring in Antarctica?  2/9/2015 239263
How Can Mars Sometimes Be Warmer Than Earth?  2/9/2015  11509
What is Hooke’s Law?  2/13/2015  6229
Here’s a Better Use for Fighter Jets: Launching Satellites  2/13/2015  7937
What is Mars Made Of?  2/25/2015  8328
 Total Views  282176

Universe Today – Total Views for December

GLOBAL-INTERNET-USEWell, it’s a new day and a new year. And unless I’m mistaken, that means that it’s time for taking stock and setting new goals. It also means that I’ve just received my tally for the month of December from Universe Today. And it seems that the longer I’m there, the more people are willing to read what I have to say. Makes sense. Still, I’ve never seen these kinds of traffic statistics before. Not with my own site, that’s for sure!

To break it down, here’s how I’ve been doing over the course the past two and half months. In October, which was my first month with UT, I garnered a total of 50,044 views for 11 articles. In November, that went up to 171,852 views for 26 articles. And for the month of December, I received 225,577 views for 23 articles. That represents a 343% increase from Oct-Nov, and a 76% increase over last month. Numbers like this make me happy!

What Percent of Earth is Water? 16,029
John Dalton’s Atomic Model 15,794
Planets Could Travel Along with Rogue ‘Hypervelocity’ Stars, Spreading Life Throughout the Universe 3,656
The Inner Planets of Our Solar System 8,918
Meteorite May Contain Proof of Life on Mars, Researchers Say 6,104
10 Facts About the Milky Way 25,643
Earth May Have Lost Some Primoridial Atmosphere to Meteors 1,234
The Science of Heat Transfer: What Is Conduction? 5,258
Solar System History: How Was the Earth Formed? 5,768
How Strong is the Gravity on Mars? 12,264
A Universe of 10 Dimensions 37,742
NASA’s RoboSimian And Surrogate Robots 932
What Causes Day and Night? 11,563
Just in Time for the Holidays – Galactic Encounter Puts on Stunning Display 1,398
What is the Average Surface Temperature of the Planets in our Solar System? 16,333
SpaceX Continues to Expand Facilities, Workforce in Quest for Space 4,413
Compromises Lead to Climate Change Deal 795
Meteoric Evidence Suggests Mars May Have a Subsurface Reservoir 2,916
The Milky Way’s New Neighbor May Tell Us Things About the Universe 2,519
What is the Average Surface Temperature on Venus? 4,722
Elon Musk’s Hyperloop Might Become A Reality After All 11,476
Student Team Wants to Terraform Mars Using Cyanobacteria 21,312
Making the Trip to Mars Cheaper and Easier: The Case for Ballistic Capture 8,788
Total Views 225,577

If there is one goal I’d like to set for the new year, its to turn some of that readership towards this here site, the sister site HeroX, and possibly towards some book sales as well. Those numbers have been comparatively pitiful lately, and I don’t think it would be too crass of me to hope for some additional readership in the New Year.

And here’s hoping the New Year proves to be a lucrative, fun and interesting time for my fellow bloggers and indie writers too (not necessarily in that order). What projects do you all have for 2015? What resolutions (if any) have you made?

Universe Today – Total Views for November

InternettrafficHey folks! As is customary on the tenth of every new month, the folks over at Universe Today do an official tally of all the articles published by their authors for the previous month. And it seems that November was a pretty good one for me, even though it wasn’t exactly much of a competition. This is only my second month working for UT, and I began almost halfway through the month of October so I published way fewer articles.

Still, going from 50,444 to 171,852 is pretty good! That’s a threefold increase, and then some. The full list appears below, along with the date of publication. If any of these sound interesting, just go click on the Articles at Universe Today link under Pages on the right there.

And to my fellow bloggers, freelancers, articlers and indie writers out there – as my friend James K Bowers would say “keep hammering away at those keys!” The breaks are coming for us all!

11/18/2014 How Do Planets Form? Semarkona Meteorite Shows Some Clues 989
11/19/2014 “Spotters Guide” for Detecting Black Hole Collisions 1,245
11/3/2014 Welcome to Mars! – Hi-SEAS and Mars Society Kick Off New Season of Missions 1,295
11/4/2014 VLTI Detects Exozodiacal Light Around Exoplanets 1,419
11/13/2014 Weather Forecasting on Mars Likely to be Trickier Than on Earth 1,609
11/7/2014 Canadian Micro-Rover and Lander “Northern Light” Aim for Launch to Mars in 2018 1,661
11/28/2014 “Eye of Sauron” Galaxy Used For New Method of Galactic Surveying 2,358
11/10/2014 NASA’s Next Exoplanet Hunter Moves Into Development 2,408
11/18/2014 Warm, Flowing Water on Mars Was Episodic, Study Suggests 2,586
11/19/2014 Elusive Dark Matter Could Be Detected with GPS Satellites 2,611
11/25/2014 Africa’s First Mission to the Moon Announced 2,669
11/1/2014 A Red Moon – NOT a Sign of the Apocalypse! 2,779
11/19/2014 Amazingly Detailed New Maps of Asteroid Vesta 3,056
11/7/2014 It’s Complicated: Hubble Survey Finds Unexpected Diversity in Dusty Discs Around Nearby Stars 3,230
11/5/2014 Where Have All the Pulsars Gone? The Mystery at the Center of Our Galaxy 3,382
11/21/2014 Subaru Telescope Spots Galaxies From The Early Universe 4,399
11/21/2014 NASA’s “Remastered” View of Europa is the Best Yet 5,411
11/14/2014 Concerns over ESA’s Data Release Policy Amidst Rosetta Comet Landing 5,816
11/20/2014 Two New Subatomic Particles Found 6,040
11/15/2014 Macro View Makes Dark Matter Look Even Stranger 6,820
11/29/2014 Astronomers Poised to Capture Image of Supermassive Milky Way Black Hole 9,210
11/25/2014 The Search for Dark Energy Just Got Easier 10,796
11/27/2014 NASA’s Van Allen Probes Spot Impenetrable Radiation Barrier in Space 18,021
11/21/2014 Earth’s Orbit Around The Sun 18,279
11/29/2014 The “Potsdam Gravity Potato” Shows Variations in Earth’s Gravity 23,686
11/10/2014 What Did Isaac Newton Discover? 30,077
Total Views 171,852

Universe Today – Total Views for October

internet_trafficGood day all! Recently, I got some good news. It seems that one of the perks of writing for a major website is that they keep tallies on how your articles did. And in addition to getting paid for all the submissions I wrote for the month of October, I was also sent a list with the official numbers.

Here’s what it looked like:

10/13/2014 Bigelow Inflatable Module to be Added to Space Station in 2015 3913
10/16/2014 NASA Investigating Deep-Space Hibernation Technology 7032
10/20/2014 Water On The Moon Was Blown in by Solar Wind 1811
10/21/2014 How NASA and SpaceX are Working Together to Land on Mars 3871
10/22/2014 Is Dark Matter Coming From The Sun? 6857
10/23/2014 The Physics Behind “Interstellar’s” Visual Effects Was So Good, it Led to a Scientific Discovery 14318
10/27/2014 Small Spacecraft Ejected from Space Station Airlock Will Provide Same-Day, On-Demand Parcel Delivery 2303
10/27/2014 Make a Deal for Land on the Moon 1420
10/28/2014 100,000 Ice Blocks Mapped Out at the South Pole … of Enceladus 3124
10/28/2014 Just In Time for Halloween: Jupiter Gets a Giant Cyclops Eye! 4386
10/29/2014 Cassini Probe Spots Methane Ice Crystals In Titan’s Atmosphere 1009
Total Views 50044

Judging from this table, it seems that far more people will pay attention to you when you write about space news – instead of a combination of zombies, guns, star wars and gynoids. Who knew?

Reinstating Net Neutrality: New Bill Before US Congress

cap-hillA new “net neutrality” bill is on its way towards Congress, one which seeks to reinstate the free and open nature of the net – something that has been under fire in recent years. And one week ago, Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont and Representative Doris Matsui of California took another decisive step when they announced that they will propose a bill to stop the Federal Communications Commission from allowing paid “fast lanes” on the internet.

In short, the proposed bill demands that the FCC to use whatever authority it sees fit to make sure that Internet providers don’t speed up certain types of content (like Netflix videos) at the expense of others (like e-mail). It wouldn’t give the commission new powers, but the bill – known as the Online Competition and Consumer Choice Act – would give the FCC crucial political cover to prohibit what consumer advocates say would harm startup companies and Internet services by requiring them to pay extra fees to ISPs.

Wireless-Internet-1And this past spring, after a federal court struck down the FCC’s existing net neutrality rules – which sought to ensure that ISPs didn’t discriminate against certain internet traffic – the commission proposed a new set of rules that has left many worried that ISPs could start charging web companies like Google and Netflix to deliver their content at faster speeds. Such an arrangement, these sources say, would squeeze out newer and smaller operations that can’t pay the fees.

Leahy and Matsui, both Democrats, are part of a widespread effort to ensure that all web companies, from Google to Netflix to Snapchat, are treated equally on the internet. On the other side, big-name internet service providers such as Comcast and Verizon are fighting to maintain control over how their networks operate. Caught in the middle are internet users who stand to lose if the ISPs create a new internet where its harder for certain services to reach them.

https://i2.wp.com/img.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-switch/files/2014/06/Screen-Shot-2014-06-16-at-18.12.56.jpgAfter holding a hearing on net neutrality in Vermont this past summer, Leahy came to an invariable conclusion:

Americans are speaking loud and clear. They want an Internet that is a platform for free expression and innovation, where the best ideas and services can reach consumers based on merit rather than based on a financial relationship with a broadband provider.

Though FCC chairman Ted Wheeler has claimed that internet fast lanes would be “commercially unreasonable” and therefore forbidden under its own proposed new rules, critics worry that the rules are too broad and would allow for loopholes as to what counts as commercially reasonable activity. Since the new rules were proposed, protests have taken place in front of the FCC’s offices, massive internet petitions have been mounted, and an epic rant was made by Last Week Tonight host John Oliver.

https://i1.wp.com/www.wired.com/images_blogs/threatlevel/2014/01/topic_net-neutrality.pngThe new bill would provide a mandate regarding how the FCC deals with any sort of paid prioritization, but it wouldn’t reclassify providers. Also, the new bill would only apply to connections from internet service providers to customers’ homes, commonly referred to as last mile connections. It wouldn’t pertain to “peering”, the deals governing the ways that internet service providers connect with each other or with content providers like Netflix and Google.

Despite these limitations, Public Knowledge supports the proposed legislation. As vice president of government affairs Chris Lewis said in a statement:

This bill sends a clear signal to the FCC that fast lanes and paid prioritization could endanger the internet ecosystem as we know it. The reason we have seen so much financial investment and innovation online is because the playing field for new entrepreneurs is level. As the FCC continues to evaluate new net neutrality rules, it’s important they understand that Americans want an internet that everyone can succeed in, not just the companies with enough money to pay a toll to ISPs.

https://i1.wp.com/www3.pcmag.com/media/images/425188-net-neutrality.pngThe bill may face serious challenges, however. Republicans control the House and have proposed their own bill to block the FCC from reclassifying internet service providers. In this respect, net neutrality is dividing lawmakers along partisan lines, and Republicans are not expected to support the proposed Leahy-Matsui bill. But in theory, a bipartisan agreement could be reached, especially since the Leahy-Matsui bill leaves reclassification off the table.

And given the level of public pressure on law makers and regulators to protect the function of the internet, it’s too early to count this or any other legislation that addressing the issue of neutrality out. Network neutrality has become a hot button issue, much like domestic surveillance and data collection. And the people are sending a clear message: they want the internet to be a level playing field and won’t rest until the rules clearly reflect that.

Sources: wired.com, washingtonpost.com

Of Search Terms and Hits

0427_Cyber_full_600Recently, I went by my traffic page to see just how many hits I was getting in recent days. Naturally, I was sure to take a gander at the referrals and search term portions of this page, just to see who was looking for what and who else might have led them to me in the first place. Needless to say, it was interesting, and pretty consistent with what I’ve been seeing in the last few months.

Ah, but then, I decided to look at the All-Time totals to see just how much of my traffic I owed to certain subjects. You can tell much about your own page and the impact it’s having by seeing what search term more than any other led people to you. And after looking over the grand totals, I thought I might list the top 15 and see what I could conclude from it.

So, here are the top 15 search terms which have led people to my site since it went online in March of 2011:

  1. Joker:  10,060
  2. The Joker:  4,813
  3. Bath Salts Zombie:  2,267
  4. Bath Salt Zombie:  1,585
  5. Predator:  1,010
  6. Moon:  918
  7. COD (Call of Duty):  887
  8. Bayonet:  820
  9. Tiananmen Square:  607
  10. Firefly Serenity:  607
  11. Firefly:  535
  12. Zombie Apocalypse:  511
  13. Zombie Weapons:  495
  14. Desert Eagle .50 cal:  442
  15. Futuristic Guns:  412

What to conclude from all of this? I’m not sure I want to think about it much. If I did, I might have to admit that maybe my site mainly appeals to gamers, gun enthusiasts and people who like reading about insane clowns, zombies and recreational cannibalism. Not exactly the reason I started writing this thing in the first place!

But then again, I could just as easily conclude that, like me, these people enjoy a good romp through nerd territory, complete with dystopian fiction, post-apocalypticism, cool weapons, cool games and cool franchises. And maybe, just maybe, they enjoy learning about history and engaging in some thoughtful discussion along the way.

Hey, a man can always dream, right? 😉

200,000 Hits!

inspirationWell, well… another milestone has come, and it seems I missed it by about 48 hours! And that was after over a week of waiting for it to come. I am referring not only to reaching over 200,000 views, but also to the fact this blog is reaching the end of its second year. Just two months to go, and storiesbywilliams will be two! Ah well, I’m here now, and there are a few things I want to say to mark this occasion. Well, for starters, I would like to say thank you once again to all the people who have come by and made this milestone happen.

And then there’s the people who come by more than once, and on purpose. Those people deserves a thank you too! And third, there are the people who’ve come by, stuck around, and even offered supportive comments. Those people deserve an extra special thank you! Were it not of the enduring and consistent support of you fine folks – and you know who you are! – this blog would have flopped and gone under a long time ago.

fireworks2Yes, I know it seems like I’ve said this many times over now, but that’s the thing about marking milestones. They tend to kind of build up after the first few. First there’s your first 100 views, then 500, then 1000. After that, the milestones become fewer and farther between. But until you get into six or seven figures, they are likely to happen quite often. But I want to space things out a bit more, so I promise not to say anything until I reach 500,000 views.

Zombie_Apocalypse_by_geodexSo lets see, what’s next for this site? Well, I just published Data Miners, that was good, especially after three years of being in development. Pappa Zulu is also nearing completion, which will be nice because I plan to take that opportunity to go back, edit Whiskey Delta, and then release it! I foresee a zombie-fighting trilogy emerging, so stay tuned for more on that (still need a name for the third one though).

And of course, there’s Yuva, which needs to get finished and go through a full-on edit. And somewhere in between all that, I plan to restart my old idea, Apocrypha, my first real attempt at speculative sci-fi that wasn’t set in the distant future. Man, these next few months are going to be busy!

apoc_soldiersAnd I hope you all stick around to see what happens. And of course, I promise to remain a committed follower and viewer of what you have to say and will consider myself flattered that you choose to involve me in your adventures, stories and creative processes. After all, sharing makes for a more richer life experience, if for no other reason than because it lets us know we’re not alone.

This is what we do, people, and this is why we do it!