Online Committee Report, ITA 2012

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Summary

The website has been running smoothly and consistently. A new set of features were released to the website two weeks ago and we working with SixFeetUp to develop an alternative solution to mailing lists. As usual, some figures regarding website usage are provided in the Analytics section. 

The two main topics of this report are

  • New contracting method with SFU
  • New features to host sub-websites. 
 
These topics are detailed in the sections below.
 

New contracting method with SFU

Following the approval of the BoG at ITW 2011, a new contract has been established with SFU to bill a number of hours instead of precise tasks. This contract gives us greater flexibility and reactivity in order to address discovered bugs or re-prioritize software development if a timely manner, and avoids unnecessary interactions with IEEE. This contracting method does not change how we interact with SixFeetUp and does not affect our operating budget.

 

Sub-websites

Our web infrastructure allows us to host "sub-websites", which can be managed independently of the main websites but integrate seamlessly in the overall infrastructure. The two main advantages of this feature are the following.

  • Event organizers can immediately setup a full-blown website with advanced capabilities;
  • The website is easily archived and given a legacy url (for instance, http://www.itsoc.org/school2009)

Sub-wesbsite have been tested since 2009 to host the 2009-2012 North-American school websites and the 2012 European school websites, and additional features have recently been deployed to further simplify the task of even organizers and increase user-friendliness. These features are described below.

  • Feature 1: support of slideshow in sub sites. The home page of sub-sites now support slideshows that can be customized.
  • Feature 2: support of events and news items in sub sites. Each sub site can now post its own events and news items, which can be featured or not on the main website. For instance, a single announcements for a call for paper can be automatically displayed on the main website and on the sub site.

A test website based on ITW 2011 is temporarily available as an example at http://www.itsoc.org/itw2011

 

Analytics

 The last five months of web traffic show over 300 visits / day with 62.55% from search engines, 23.09% from direct traffic, and 14.37% from referring sites. The table below compares various analytics between the three-month periods of 05/11/2011-07/30/2011 and 07/30/2011-10/17/2011.

Statistic 07/30/2011-10/17/2011 10/17/2011-1/4/2012
Visits 24,753 21,988 (13,197 unique)
Pageviews 64,181 58,489
Pages/Visit 2.6 2.66
Bounce Rate 61.34% 62.28%
Avg. Time 2:03 2:13
New Visits 48.54% 52.79%

All of the above statistics may be self explanatory except for bounce rate, which is the percentage of single-page visits.  The growth in visits overall is encouraging; other number suggest that the community has grown a bit more accustomed to the site over time.

The following table show the top 5 page views (not including the main page) of the website.
Page name Pageviews 
european school 
1,586
qip 2011 (news)
1,266
information for authors
1,084
upcoming conferences
774
IT paper award
677

 

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