26 Jun 2013

Some News: Dynamic Views, Stats and Stumblers


I am in the middle of making a few minor changes to this website, so time for an update and a round-up of the first six months online.

New Dynamic Views

You will notice a new navigation bar in the header. As the site has grown, many questions now lie buried deep within the Archive; and how many people browse the Archive? So the new links are there to group together questions at about the same difficulty level. However, those links also take you to a new way to view Gifted Mathematics!

Google calls these Dynamic Views and you can select your favourite View by using the dropdown menu on the far left. I have chosen to use Snapshots merely because it shows thumbnails of all the relevant images within a post. Flipcard looks cleaner, and Mosaic is fun, but they only pick up the first image as their default thumbnail so an important diagram related to the question is often missing. Another great advantage of Dynamic Views is that it automatically scales to be optimal for most devices.

However, Dynamic Views has some drawbacks, the main one being that many gadgets and apps do not currently function properly. So, for the moment, I am using Dynamic Views as an overlay and the default layout will remain unchanged. If I see that there is a lot of use of this feature I may consider making it the new standard layout. Be aware that in my own testing I have found that the Google+ Comments box is not working within Dynamic Views. I shall look into this more deeply but, for the moment, to see and respond to comments just refresh the page you are on and it will automatically flip back to the standard layout. Any feedback on this would be welcomed.

Talking of Comments...

I think it worth a reminder that the newly integrated G+ Comments system is working well, but the only place you will see all the comments and shares is on the website. For example, when I publish a new question the first place it is posted to is the Mathematics Competition Community on G+. If somebody shares that post to another community, or publicly, then comments on that shared post will not appear in my original G+ post but they will appear on the original question at this website. Think of it as the aggregator of all comments related to that question. Because of the scale of G+ it is not uncommon to find a comment thread that gathers momentum outside of my Community. Also, comments made on the website itself do not appear on G+ unless they are replies to existing comments.

Thank You Stumblers!

I have been using StumbleUpon for many years; admittedly rather on-and-off but it has always been my favourite bookmarking website. So it is no surprise that I am still using it with a Mathematics Competitions List of links to this and other websites related to various maths competitions. You will also often find links to useful websites with apps, scripts and tables of mathematics that are helpful in playing around with some of the questions I set.

Well, my one moan is that StumbleUpon needs to improve a bit on the way they present data to the user. If I go to my homepage, I find that I have only 5 Followers – yes, I know, deeply sad. However, only when I have a look at my Lists page do I discover that the Mathematics Competition List has nearly 600 followers! So, a big “Thank You!” to you Stumblers; and a wee moan at SU for not (yet) showing that data on my profile page.

Number Crunching

After six months online, this Gifted Mathematics website has received over 37,000 pageviews and 1.4k shares on Google+. The G+ profile page has about 2.2k votes and nearly 800 people in its circles. The Mathematics Competitions Community has nearly 700 members and growing. All I need is a few more people to answer the Prize Maths Quiz questions!

Thanks to everyone who has participated, shared, downloaded question papers or just given a thumb up!

Richard
Owner of GiftedMathematics.com


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