2010 Review

I’ve been a bit lax keeping the site up this past year. For that, my apologies. Keeping up with the demands and rewards of my own small family (as well as work, exercise (I’ve lost 20 pounds!), etc.) has left me without as much time for my genealogy habit. My own genealogical records have gotten behind (there are children who can speak now who haven’t been entered into the family tree yet) and I’ve all but stopped doing real research for lack of time.

Sadly, this laxity has dropped the site’s page rankings in various search engines. I have only myself to blame for that, having only written and published four articles in 2010 (as opposed to 51 in 2009). Part of this is due to my dropping my Ancestry.com account ($!). Part is due to starting articles and not finishing them (see comments about time above). I’ve several articles almost ready to publish here, but haven’t wrapper them up yet. I’ll make a concerted effort to put more articles out this year, including those articles already mostly written.

Despite this, here are the top five articles from 2010 (as far as 29 December):

  1. The Origins of the Keating Name
  2. John Keating and his Forbears
  3. Texas, Maryland Archaelogical Dig
  4. Keating Reunion – Descendents of Michael Keating
  5. Baldwinstown Castle

Also, although of lesser interest to the wide world, here are the top five people in my family tree who have garnered hits:

  1. John Charles Keating — My great(1)-great(2)-grandfather
  2. John Hobbs II — My great(1)-great(2)-great(3)-great(4)-great(5)-grandfather
  3. Julia Hyland —My great(1)-great(2)-grandmother
  4. Joshua Hobbs — My great(1)-great(2)-great(3)-great(4)-granduncle
  5. John Hobbs I — My great(1)-great(2)-great(3)-great(4)-great(5)-great(6)-grandfather

Other interesting trivia:

  1. Most visitors still use Internet Explorer (62.5%), followed by Firefox (22.3%), Safari (8.1%), Chrome (5.2%), and Mozilla (1%).
  2. Most are Windows users (87.73%). Apple’s Macintosh is next (9.18%) followed by Linux-based systems (1.47%). It will be interesting to see over the next few years how many people start using tablets (the iPad is already at 0.26%) and other mobile systems.
  3. Screen resolution: 1024×768 (27.02%), 1280×800 (16.61%), 1440×900 (9.62%), 1280×1024 (9.42%), and 1366×768 (5.41%).
  4. Most of our readers are from the United States, with the United Kingdom, Ireland, Canada, and Australia following. This doesn’t surprise me, as it follows the normal pattern of the Irish diasporas.
  5. There have been 36,602 spam comments on the articles so far this year. Thank goodness for the Akismet tool, or I’d do nothing but spend my time deleting spam.

Some changes I’m planning on making over the next year:

  1. More articles! As I mentioned above, I have several partially written articles that I need to finish up and publish. I may not reach the quantity of articles written over the last several years, but I hope the quality will be higher.
  2. In what may be an overabundance of caution, I’m going to edit the content of several articles to reduce the possibility of copyright violations. While I believe what I have is covered under “fair use”, there are enough horror stories out there about people being sued. I see no sense in risking my family’s fiscal health for what is a hobby for me. My goal is to include, for sources still under copyright, the relevant information (including a citation and possibly a link to the source) but remove any recent articles copied in toto. (This includes obituaries.)
  3. I may change the layout of the pages a bit. The layout is currently highly vertically oriented, with a lot of empty space on either side on wider displays. I think a wider, fit-to-the-user’s-display, theme may work better. I’ve been looking through the ones available for WordPress, but haven’t found any that jump out at me yet. Any suggestions?
  4. I may also add in more support for mobile devices. I often access both this journal as well as my genealogy pages via my smartphone (Palm Pre). I expect more people will be doing the same as smartphones and tablets become more widely used.
  5. As part of the layout changes, I may try to make the genealogy and journal pages more similar. This will be difficult, as they come from different sources (Second Site and WordPress, respectively), but may not be impossible.

Any suggestions? I’m open to articles written by readers. Let me know if you wish to contribute.

Thanks to my loyal readers and family!

John

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