|Readers have spoken|
How many of you responded? Well, I know how many responses were reported by the polling service. But did every response get to me? Of course I don't know what I don't know -- like which responses ended up in a bit bucket.
I do know that website usage stats are notoriously unreliable. For this blog I get page-hit data from two independent services -- and they never agree. They're seldom even close. Even different views within the same service sometimes show different/inconsistent data. Plus, I know that not all readers actually hit my blog directly: SF and Nonsense is subscribeable through RSS and email, and it's syndicated through Goodreads, my Amazon Author page, and other sites. Maybe online polling data are more dependable -- but I'm skeptical.
Hence: I don't assume I got every reply. (You took part? Of course I got your input, and thanks for that. It's that other guy whose input went astray. You feel better now, right?) I likewise can't be sure I know how many people viewed the specific post that announced the survey. If I were to take the available data at face value, about one in four who viewed the invitation clicked through and completed the actual survey. That would be a decent response rate -- how many among us take every survey sent our way? -- and I appreciate it.
Having said all that, I believe I can draw valid inferences from the relative frequencies of responses. That is, it seems unlikely that any particular type of response is more likely to have gone astray than another type. (And having said that, I recognize that those who responded self-selected. They may not be representative visitors to the blog -- but a case can be made they are among the most interested visitors.)
So what what did people have to say? Read on ...
- News and commentary about the author's published fiction: 93.3%
- News and commentary about the science-fiction genre: 66.7%
- News and commentary about science and technology: 60%
- News and commentary about current events: 20%
- News and commentary about the author's published nonfiction: 20%
- News and commentary about publishing and the business of writing: 6.7%
Runner-up visitor interests are overall SF genre news and science/technology. Given -- see the page header -- that this blog claims to provide "Thoughts (and occasionally fuming) about the state of science, fiction, and science fiction," it would appear I've achieved truth in advertising.
|If you're curious ...|
- The Fleet of Worlds series (collaborations with Larry Niven): 80%
- Short fiction: 40%
- Standalone novels: 40%
- InterstellarNet series novels: 40%
- Nonfiction: 13.3%
- I am not familiar with his published works: 0%
|If you're still curious ...|
Question 3: Among "science and technology" topics, which of the following (up to three choices) is of the most interest?
- Astronomy and physics: 86.7%
- Space exploration: 73.3%
- Computer science: 40%
- Security and privacy: 33.3%
- Biology and medicine: 6.7%
- Tech gadgets: 6.7%
- Other: 6.7%
- I am not interested in posts about science and technology topics: 0%
I'm also a computer engineer by training and parts of my career, and I was pleased to see related topics make a strong showing. For whatever reason, I combined the related topics of astronomy and physics into one choice but split computer science and privacy/security (which in this blog usually involves vulnerabilities in computer systems) into separate choices. Given that formatting inconsistency -- my bad -- I'm inclined to interpret that CS/security as a shared category came in tied with space exploration, and so, likewise close to physics/astronomy.
Comments or further thoughts, anyone?
The survey was helpful for me (and for those who have read this far, it was presumably of some interest to you). Next post, I promise, you'll see less introspective subject matter.
And in closing: if you took part in the SF and Nonsense reader survey -- again, thank you.