Getting Slashdotted

I submitted another story to Slashdot, which was accepted and published over the weekend. I like Slashdot, because I think I understand the audience I’ll reach. In this case, the story was about do-it-yourself weather forecasting and the tools available on the net.

I mentioned GrADS, software I use to produce weather graphics, and a few government sites. Bright and early Monday morning, I got an email from the GrADS site telling me they had be slashdotted!

“Slashdotted,” describes the effect that follows having your web address published on Slashdot. All of a sudden, thousands of geeks from around the world are pounding on your site, trying to see what’s so interesting. In many cases, the sites just stop working or crash under the incredible traffic.

The folks from GrADS were actually happy. Their goal is to get their projects and software recognized and used. This got them a little closer.

I knew what would happen if I exposed my site to the barrage, so I linked to a single graphic… a small chart showing forecast conditions in New Haven, CT. It’s something so esoteric that no one would have it but me. That one graphic got well over 5,000 hits.

If I would have linked to a full page, with photos and text and links, my site would have gone down under the strain. I also might have exceeded the 6 gigabytes of throughput I pay for (and never use) each month.

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