While working on the new PM design I had to make some assumptions about the potential end users. I searched through the past discussions about what features users wanted and what did and did not work. The problem with this data is that it is opt in only and a very small data set. A simple solution would be to either add google analytics to the site and get the data processed for us or run some open source software over the web server logs.
Both solutions provide a much needed insight into actual user behavior. PerlMonks is a site that recognizes that ‘Content is King’ but how do the users interact with it? How do people find content on PerlMonks? Considering the feedback I have received to drop IE support, how many people are using IE? Android? and which versions? How long do users stay on PerlMonks? What is the average page load time? Are some pages slower than the rest of the site?
By knowing more about the audience, PM can adapt to fit the community’s needs. Also doing some short term heatmap testing would help a great deal too.