io9 has filled out it's initial trio of Recruits, adding Jason Krell on Animation to Jason G. Goldman on Animals and me on Space. It's 45 days into my 90-day trial period, and readership is building slow-but-steady.

As this entry's adorable thank-you, have you met Edison the Hedgehog? He's the real reason that dinosaurs went extinct, eaten by more competitive mammals. While I don't think I'll get the excuse to talk about hedgehogs in the context of astronomy or planetary science for Space, I've previously worked out that, footstep-for-footstep, my tiny friend runs more than a marathon every night. Impressive little spikeballs!

Since last update, yes, I did cross that beloved 300k boundary for March, but it was 300k international, not US Uniques. So, while it made me very happy, it doesn't get me over the Recruits target line. My numbers are still being skewed by gravitational waves, but I've had some decidedly nice days that have nothing to do with major discoveries.

300k/month works out to an average of 10k/day. I'm still not making 10k/day on a regular basis, but under all the saw-toothing, my US-Uniques are regularly increasing. At the moment, I'm hitting about 80% of the target-numbers. Conclusion: making it over the thresh-hold is more attainable than I originally anticipated.


I am enamored with the international spread in readers. Last time I mentioned the locations with the highest traffic, but Space is collecting readers from Jamaica, the Isle of Man, the Republic of Moldova, the Maldives, Latvia, Luxembourg... 106 different countries. The UN only recognizes 193 total, so now I feel like I should make a target-list of countries to collect. That, or run a field trip. Hey, Icelanders who checked out the site 200 times in March, want offer me crash-space for my long-dreamed-of hotspot/rift adventure?


This past week was a bit of an accidental-experiment. It's approaching end-of-term for my students, so I've had to shift focus to concentrate on their final lectures, assignments, and a whole stack of grading, drawing me away from writing and advertising. That effectively put Space on autopilot for a week, turning out the pre-scheduled articles but without me to cheerlead or produce current-events-explainers in real-time. The impact on traffic was painful, paired with a rough few days where nothing was spliced onto the io9 main page. On the flip side, it was really fun to take a week to not pay attention to numbers or tracking.

Update/clarification: Edison Quillsworth Bristlebottom isn't my tiny friend. The dino-slayer lives with Jenn Sell & Ryan Gierke. My tiny friend is more into intra-species snuggling than chomping, and is particularly fond of cephalopods.