Thursday, December 15, 2005

Something between 2 and 3 billion visitors

This is how you can make quarter a million sound like a lot. ;-)

There is a counter on the right side. If you happen to see the number 250,000, you may write your name as a comment here. The prize for the round visitor includes 3 articles that he or she can post here.

The number 250,000 counts unique visitors - in the sense that every day, one IP address can only increase the number by one. The total number of hits is close to 1 million.

The Reference Frame does not plan any further celebrations. ;-)

Update: Robert Helling and Matt B. both claim to have grabbed 250,000, and I still have not decided who is right. Matt B. has sent me a screenshot so his case is pretty strong. It is academically possible that the number 250,000 was shown to two people - because by reloading, one can see the current "score" without adding a hit.


  1. I saw 250000 and have a screenshot. I found your blog through Mixed States by the way.

  2. A screenshot is not conclusive unless you can prove it was your first visit of the day!

  3. Dear Phil,

    let's not be too dogmatic. When someone was near 250,000, like Robert, I find it plausible that he could not resist to reload the picture in some way to get the round number.

    What's more puzzling is that Matt B. also claims to be the visitor #250,000, having a screenshot (which I have not seen yet).

    All the best

  4. It wan't my first visit of the day I admit. But who can resist refreshing such a great blog? ;)

    I do have the screenshot if you're still interested though. Should I send to your harvard email?

  5. Yes, please! The screenshot would be welcome. ;-) motl at

    Was not one of the digits 9 instead of 0, for example?

  6. lumo, you explained yourself that the number only counts one IP once for the day. Reloading the page will not increment it. If they reloaded and saw it go up to 250000 it was because someone else had visited for the first time that day, right? If people were reloading, several of them may have seen it on 250000, but only one who loaded for the first time that day was the real 250000th visitor.