Thursday, November 05, 2009

The Nuit Blanche Effect

When was the last time you knew for a fact that more than 120 people had read the abstract of your paper within a week of releasing it ?

Back in May 2008 at the Nonlinear L1 meeting at Texas A&M University, we were having lunch with Adam Oberman, Anna Gilbert and Simon Foucart. During the conversation, I suddenly realized the power of the blog when, out of the blue, Adam mentioned to me that he knew of the blog (first big surprise, we are in College Station, Texas and somebody has heard of the blog :-)) through a friend who had seen a spike of downloads for his paper after being mentioned here (second surprise!). Ever since that moment I have been trying to quantify this effect which, it seems, has grown over time. If you have stories about this or any other stories connected to the blog (you can stay anonymous), I would be very happy to hear them. Let us note that this number is a conservative one as it does not include the people being directly mailed the blog entries (237 as we speak), nor the people coming directly to the website nor people using another feed than the one listed above (412).

One more note, the first technincal blog entry after that meeting pointed out the need to understand better the RIP (Restricted Isometry Property: What is it good for ?), a subject of continuing interest.

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