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First 5 months of TheAquarium - Reporting on GlassFish and more...

Posted by pelegri on April 30, 2006 at 11:58 AM PDT


I've not been very active on my Java.Net blog because I have spend most of my blogging time coordinating and contributing to the
The Aquarium.
We started TheAquarium on November 30th and I provided a
Report after 1 month;
since
JavaOne
is around the corner, I thought I'd do an updated report now, at 5 months, rather than wait for the customary 6 months.

The Aquarium is a News Group blog; we started focused on all portions of the
GlassFish Community
(including JSF, JAX*, JWSDP, etc) but we also cover several other related communities like
Open ESB, Portal, Derby, Web Server
and AJAX and Scripting,
as well as tools (mostly NetBeans but also
some Eclipse) and Mustang.
The Aquarium is a major contributor to the list of
Frameworks and Applications that work with GlassFish.

In the first 5 months we have written over 570 entries.
Counting the original sources (bloggers) is harder, but I did a quick pass and
guesstimate it at over 260; some are very prolific, some not.
We seem to have stabilized around 5-7 entries a weekday,
we are mostly limited by the ability of the editors to keep up with the sources
and we are planning to add a planet aggregator to address that.
Most of the sources are from Sun but the ratio of non-Sun bloggers
is increasing steadly.

We publish two localizations:
Chinese
- led by Qingqing and
Spanish - myself -
that provide an additional outreach into specific communities
complementing the main blog, which is in english.

We generate a
Weekly Roundup of the news and there is also a
Search Facility.

Blog readership and impact is always hard to gauge accuratedly, but we are happy with visitors: we are always in the top 10 most popular blogs of
Blogs.Sun.Com, often in the top 5 and we
have been top 1 several times.
Our repeat visitor ratio is excellent, over 30%, and annecdotal buzz is
very positive
( title="Tim Bray's quote...">"Excellent Aquarium",
title="Paul Walk's quote...">"Great blog").
We believe that The Aquarium has been very succesful as a
Knowledge Base
and also has worked well increasing awaress of the projects it covers.

Looking to the future,
we just added a new editor,
Ron,
that will focus on SOA, JBI and ESB,
and we expect another editor.
We also have a Japanese localization ready and we are considering one more.
We are also planning some focused coverage of JavaOne.

Overall, our experience with The Aquarium has been very positive
and very much welcome any suggestions you may have to improve it.

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