[wordpress] stats broken – proof

[Latest, as of 10th June, just a few hours after posting: Oops, while the stats probably are somewhat broken, this purported “proof” is a mis-interpretation (and that could apply also to my earlier observation): the stats main page only shows the 10 most viewed pages. Argh. Is it better to add a comment like this, showing off my rush-to-conclusions error to all readers, or to silently delete the posting? I left the posting in place. In a way, my eror ilustrats my point that its extremely easy to make errors, especially based on invalid assumptions!]

In my earlier posting “wordpress: broken stats?” I conjectured that the WordPress number-of-views-of-your-blog stats are broken. I then found an instance where the number of views of a posting decreased from 1 to 0 (within the same day), but that’s a bit difficult to show visually! However, right now the stats of this blog offer self-contradicting information in the same page, so I took a snapshot of the screen:

WordPress stats 9th July 2010 (inconsistent)

WordPress stats 9th June 2010 (inconsistent)

C:\test> set /a 28+3+3+3+3+3+3+2+2+2
C:\test> _

As you can see, the total number of views of my blog today (until I took the snapshot) is purportedly 61, while the sum of number of views of individual pages is 52.

As far as I know almost all modern software is broken. Only Donald Knuth’s TeX is possibly bug-free. But it’s perhaps not modern software.

As evidence I offer the following two bugs encountered while taking this screen snapshot. First, Windows Explorer protested silently and almost hung when I told it to change the desktop background to white and kindly remove all those icons. What, you can’t be serious, don’t you want my super-duper icon grid and entertaining screen refreshes? Second, Microsoft HTML Workshop’s image editor, which I use because of its nice auto-crop feature, turned out to not be able to handle image regions of 1200 pixels height. Oh dear, you can’t be serious, do you really want to crop to a region that high? Nah. I refuse! So, I used Microsoft Photo Editor for the cropping. It worked, but of course, a program that works – Microsoft stopped bundling it with Office…

By the way, I was able to count to 170 while waiting for the Windows Explorer right click menu to appear for an HTML file of an earlier posting. I just wanted to code for “read more”. The silly beast evidently scans the Windows registry to find relevant menu items.

And just to round up this encountered-while-posting-this-blog-entry bug parade, Windows’ Task Manager generally fails to register internal Windows activity such as Windows Explorer’s drop-dead periods of ruminations and thinking-about-it. Windows’ Task Manager is much like the WordPress stats. Some things it registers, other like things (apparently this is decided more or less randomly) are disregarded. Anyway. Yes.


2 comments on “[wordpress] stats broken – proof

  1. A few seconds after my first login, I was trying to choose a theme for my blog and typed something into the search box; result: three previews shown, with text saying (from memory) “15 out of 96 themes shown” and a refresh button that didn’t change absolutely anything.

    When something is as broken as that I think all bets are off (in fact, it scares me; I posted my first entry today and the thought that began immediately wandering through my head is that either I have to leave WordPress or have everything that I put there in a local SVN repository too…).

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