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Metadata and Macintosh

Last week, a few high-volume blogs made note of the operating systems and browsers that their visitors used.  Of particular interest was the significant increase in number of users using Macs over a two year time span.  While my blog does not even receive a fraction of the traffic of kottke.org (for example), I thought that I’d run the same analysis on my data.

This is the overall distribution of operating systems:

1. Windows: 79.99%
2. Macintosh: 18.28%
3. Linux : 1.17%
4. iPhone:  0.24%
5. Sony: 0.01%

Obviously, Archaeology of the Mediterranean World readers are overwhelmingly PC users.

One Year Ago:

1. Windows: 82.08%
2. Macintosh: 16.50%
3. Linx: 1.05%
4. iPhone: 0.13%
5. FreeBSD: 0.01%

This year:

1. Windows: 78.06%
2. Macintosh: 19.90%
3. Linux: 1.28%
4. iPhone: 0.46%
5. Sony: 0.03%

Last three months:

1. Windows: 76.83%
2. Macintosh: 19.93%
3. Lixux: 1.77%
4. iPhone: 0.62%
5. Sony: 0.10%

As for browsers, this is the overall distribution:

1. Firefox: 45.65%
2. IE: 39.32%
3. Safari: 8.16%
4. Opera: 2.89%
5. Crome: 2.50%

One year ago:

1. IE: 45.05%
2. Firefox: 42.52%
3. Safari: 7.65%
4. Opera: 3.08
5. Monzilla: 0.66%

This year:

1. Firefox: 48.60%
2. IE: 33.92%
3. Safari: 8.65%
4. Chrome: 4.47%
5. Opera: 7.71%

Last three months:

1. Firefox: 51.24%
2. IE: 31.86%
3. Safari: 8.59%
4. Chrome: 4.16%
5. Opera: 2.14%

But what does this all mean?

Compared to kottke.org and other high-volume blogs, my blog is behind in visits by Macs.  I’ll offer a few mundane observations:

1. Over 45% of my visitors are not from the U.S.  Macintosh may have gained popularity in the US particularly over the last year or so, but overseas, the world is still overwhelmingly PC oriented.  So some of the strong Windows showing probably derives from the international visitors to this blog.  I suspect that archaeologists slightly prefer PCs (my friends at the University of Cincinnati aside) especially those who run Microsoft Access databases and ESRI GIS programs.

2. More Macs than ever.  From totally anecdotal evidence, I have seen more Macs on campus this year than ever before.  In fact, in my class that is an introduction to the history major (History 240, for those of you who read this blog regularly), I’d guess that 20% of the class are Mac users. So the upsurge in the number of Mac users in the last three months (when people tend to buy their shinny new back-to-school computers) is not completely surprising (nor is the uptick in Safari users).

3. Where are the netbooks?  I’ve also seen a huge increase in the number of netbooks on campus.  Most of those run Windows, but apparently these folks don’t visit my blog. Perhaps enough of these new netbooks run Linux that they account for the increase in number of Lixus OS visitors (and most likely account for some of the increase in number of Firefox users).

4.  People are using Chrome, apparently at the expense of Internet Explorer (since there is still no Chrome for Mac).  It’s remarkable to see how precipitously the number of IE users have fallen over the past two years

Bloggers seems to love Macs.  I admit to using a Mac to post on this blog probably 60% of the time, but for the record, I prefer my Windows computer for blogging.  As far as I can tell, there is no Mac rival to Windows Live Writer, which is the best blogging software around.  It lets me compose and lay-out my post in a word processor-like interface, decent spell checking, allows me to produce a glossery of links and to drag-and-drop pictures and data produced by other Microsoft programs.  I can post to my various blogs by a simple menu making it easy to cross-post (without cutting and pasting) and even saves drafts of my blog posts making it easy for me to update a post.  And best of all, it was free!

The only inconvenience is that I tend to write on my Mac, so I’d love to find a decent blogging program for that OS… any advice on one?

Categories: The New Media
  1. October 5, 2009 at 11:33 am

    If you’re looking for Mac blog software, you should definitely check out ecto: http://illuminex.com/ecto
    Works with pretty nearly all blog CMSs, has a 21 day free trial, is pretty stable / reliable, lets you do rich text editing.

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