Hacker News follow up post

This is my obligatory post about what happened as part of the aftermath of being on the Hacker News homepage for the best part of 12 hours recently.

I had written a post on a bit of a whim about some of the unique challenges associated with being able to set your own working hours.

I say it was on a whim because initially it was going to be an email that I was going to circulate around the Buffer team, but I decided as well as their feedback I would love other folk to get involved and talk about their experiences.

So I wrote the post, put it live and shared the link on places like Reddit and Hacker News.

Feedback

As I have already said the whole purpose of the post was to try and get feedback, I had even done things like initially used the word ‘problem’ in the title because I know how much fellow engineers love solving them! With that in mind I wanted to first talk about the quantity and quality of the feedback.

As of writing these are the feedback stats;

  • 15 comments from others on the original post.
  • 43 total comments on the Hacker News thread (some of these were mine in response to the kind folk who took time to comment).
  • 10 total comments on the Reddit thread (again some of these are mine).
  • 3 emails from folk wanting to thank or discuss the post via email.

I couldn’t be happier with the quantity and more importantly the quality of the responses, people really blew me away by taking time out of their day to share their experiences with a complete stranger, it was amazing.

Traffic

I know for a fact this is what a lot of the people reading this will be interested in, I know because normally when I read posts like these this is one of the things I like to see!

Just reporting on traffic is a pure vanity metric but it was so lovely to see a massive spike in traffic in terms of overall traffic but also concurrent folk using the site at once.

Graphs always speak better than words for this, so here are some screenshots :-)

a traffic spike
A view of the spike compared to my normal traffic
A nice breakdown by hour
A nice breakdown by hour
a chart showing click throughs
This was interesting, this charts hits to my landing page for my book. Did not think people would click into it but they clearly did!

Hosting

I wanted to take an opportunity to publicly call out the great work done by my hosting company Big Wet Fish.

The site survived this massive traffic spike without once slowing down or becoming unavailable.  I didn’t give them any prior warning and it isn’t like I am paying out of the nose for something far heavier than I need, they do good work and are constantly keeping their server offerings fresh :-)

Twitter Followers

Something that I had recently added to my blog was a call to action to follow me on Twitter (by the way, you should follow me on Twitter) so a nice side effect of the exposure was that I got around 25 new folk following me on Twitter.

Other weird side effects

Off the back of being seen on Hacker News I have now had two job offers and an advertising agency wanting to give me a better deal than the ads I currently serve. These were lovely emails to get although I did say no to all three!

By the way, if you have something to say about the original post, I would love to hear your thoughts!

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