[development] Heatmaps on Drupal.org

Arnab Nandi arnab at arnab.org
Fri Aug 11 03:40:43 UTC 2006

Killes, thanks for taking the thread way offtopic. Let's try and get
back to Heatmaps.

My point was that this service allows us to do analysis while
considering a page as a 2-dimensional structure. You cannot do this
with search logs, hence the point of this service, and my email. There
are many others like it, this one seems to be simple, available(unlike
CrazyEgg) and most importantly, free.

If you want to take the trouble and write your own Javascript mouse
position handler for Drupal.org, it's not impossible, but someone will
have to do it.

Will the heatmaps be theme specific? Of course. But the Bluebeach
theme still maintains many distinctive properties common to most
Drupal themes (tabs, form layouts, etc) This can give us a lot of
usability information : for example, are the tabs really useful at
all? Do the disctinctive center-aligned-login boxes create problems?
(people will click to the left of it if  this is the case).

Also, if people have a popular website and are using Bluemarine / any
other popular theme, pl. go ahead and share your heatmaps! They are
very valuable for Drupal development!

Regarding privacy: I don't see any privacy issues at all. If we
restrict the page tracking to non-user and public pages, we are shown
an *aggregate* of all users' usage. There is no concept of personal
usage at all. Pl. let's not get paranoid here, these are stats from a
public community website, not your private AOL porn search records.

Re: Other offtopic issues that were raised:

- Pogo sticking: Use the session variable, will need some hacking
- Search Quality: Definitely improved, a simple way to test this: 1)
Take the list of search queries from logs,  2) perform Google / Yahoo
searches using "site:drupal.org" as added parameter, and then 3) use
Mean Reciprocal Rank tests to see the overlap between drupal.org
results and "state of the art" search company results.


On 8/10/06, Gerhard Killesreiter <gerhard at killesreiter.de> wrote:
> Gary Feldman wrote:
> > Gerhard Killesreiter wrote:
> >> How would you define a succes reate of searches? We log search
> >> requests too.
> > For starters, given a search and results, does the user look at them or
> > immediately submit a different but related search?  If you look at a set
> > of search results, do they seem to be related or disparate?
> Makes sense.
> > I haven't
> > looked to see if there are any automated tools that help.  I could
> > imagine automatically looking for a sequence of searches that are
> > successively refined (e.g. search for word1, then search for word1 and
> > word2), but that wouldn't find related word searches (e.g. search for
> > "categories" then search for "vocabularies").
> We have the referrers (yes, I know) for successive clicks, so it should
> be possible to see the user behaviour and might even be able to extract
> this automatically.
> > I'm sure there's more around this.  I just know enough to be dangerous,
> > i.e., I know that search facilities are used heavily at many types of
> > sites, and therefore they are an extremely important feature (perhaps
> > the most important part of any product-oriented web site), but I haven't
> > looked much at what makes a search facility good or bad.
> Oh, the search feature is heavily used on drupal.org, we had about
> 1350*50 = 67500 searches in the last week.
> And in fact, it is noticable how silent the "Drupal's search module
> sucks" crowd has become since we upgraded to 4.7.
> Cheers,
>         Gerhard


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