It’s been a few weeks since I released thoughtex, and thanks to some kind words from a few folk like Frank, Scott, Glav and Ryan a number of people have tried it out. One thing I built into thoughtex was some feature usage monitoring. After being inspired by the massive amounts of user session data that the office team collect, and as a big fan of the general principle of measuing and finding out rather than speculating I thought this was an absolutely necessary feature to build in. Although the number of times the users changed the sytle of a node in my pet project is probably not of great interest to you, dear readers there was one set of stats taht I did collect that might be of broader interest - client capabilities. Here are some graphs of various metrics.
Breakdown of Operating System Types
(this is naturally somewhat selective since WPF, the platform my app runs on is only available for Windows Vista, XP SP2 and Server 2K3)
Number of Cores
(measured by WPF - a broad indication of the client graphics capabilities. 0 = worst, 2 = best)
(this is the available screen size of the primary monitor, so it excludes space taken up by the start bar, and doesn’t include the whole desktop size in multi-monitor setups)
The key things I took away from this (other than I need to get a 4-core system with a 2561x1601 monitor) is that I was interested in how many people had upgraded to Vista. Given the audience who read Ryan/Frank’s blog this is probably not that surprising. I was also slightly surprised at just how dominant multi-core systems are now. A lot of the single-core systems were also reporting render tier 0, suggesting they don’t have a real graphics card. I wonder if these are virtual machines (since I believe VMs have both these characteristics). Also it seems I shouldn’t go nuts implementing tablet-centric features.
For those interested, the number of data points was between 1K and 10K. I know these numbers are probably heavily skewed by the population of people who tried out my app, but I’ll certainly keep an eye on these stats when designing features as more “non-alpha-geek“ users (hopefully) start using my application.