Misframe

Aug 13, 2020

What are my popular posts like?

I’ve been blogging for almost a decade now 😯. I like looking at my Google Analytics data every once in a while to see what content gets the most views. Some posts are more popular than others (regardless of when they were published), so I highlight them as top posts.

I didn’t know those posts would be popular when I wrote them. I wouldn’t even say they’re all my best work. But they’re popular and I wanted to understand why – or at least understand some of the similarities.

As of August 13 2020, the most popular posts on this blog in the past 28 days are:

  1. Recovering MySQL replication after error 1236
  2. List of Time Series Databases
  3. Optimizing Concurrent Map Access in Go
  4. Using Ansible with GitHub Actions
  5. Faster MySQL replication with group commit and delay

Occasionally Using libuv with C++ makes the top 5, but apparently not this time.

All of those posts are solutions to problems I had. They are the results of hours (or days!) of research and/or problem solving. For example, the TSDB list started off as a research task at work. We were looking for something that could replace MySQL for time series, and after hours of research I ended up with a list of various TSDBs and short notes about each of them. I just published that list. The rest of the posts are short posts with bits of code showing how to do something. They’re all straightforward, not very complicated, and didn’t take a long time to write. The actual writing part didn’t take a long time, but getting the actual content did.

It took me a long time to get to these solutions because I couldn’t find the answer anywhere else, so I had to figure things out on my own. Once I got something working I published a post, mainly as a reference for myself. Clearly they’re useful for others too. For example, I think I wrote the first post about using Ansible with GitHub Actions, and now it’s one of the top Google results when you search for something like “github actions ansible”. Never expected that!

I think these posts are popular because I’m not the only one who encountered these problems, but I may be one of the first to write about the solutions. If something takes me a few hours to figure out, then hopefully writing a post will bring that down to minutes for someone else, including myself in the future.

What I got from this brief analysis is this:

With that in mind, I don’t think I’ll ever run out of blog post content. 🙂