Wrong timing – updated

September 22, 2010

Dear Mr Dunne

About a year ago you were on Backbenchers patting yourself on the back over the extension to daylight saving.

I didn’t have a chance to contradict you and to be honest I was beginning to think it was time I admitted defeat on this issue.

However, this week’s weather has renewed my commitment to the campaign to delay the date the clocks go forward.

When daylight saving was first introduced it started at the end of October. That wasn’t too hard to adjust to because by then we’re getting about 14 hours of daylight.

Then someone decided that if some daylight saving time was good more would be better and the change in time moved to early October. That was harder to take but still some people thought that wasn’t enough. You agreed with them and moved the start of daylight saving back to the last weekend of September.

That’s just a few days after the spring equinox so we’re only getting a little more than 12 hours of daylight. Moving sunset from 6ish to 7ish in the evening means sunrise moves from 6ish to 7ish in the morning.

That extra hour at the end of the day coincides with dinner time for most people so isn’t much use and the extra hour of darkness at the start of the day seriously inconveniences people who have to start work early.

Even that mightn’t be so bad if it was summer, but this week has shown us it’s not even spring. It’s still winter. Our temperatures didn’t even make it to double figures yesterday and the forecast for the next few days doesn’t give much hope of an improvement.

Regardless of whether the sun sets at 6ish or 7ish, it’s far too cold to be outside during the evening.

Please, check the Astronomical Society’s table of sunrise and sunset times. You’ll see that taking the start of daylight saving back to the end of October makes a huge difference. If the clocks change this weekend sunrise in Dunedin won’t be until 7.17, that’s not a lot earlier than winter, but if the change is delayed by a month the sun will rise at the much more civilised time of 6.22.

We’ve given the extension to daylight saving a fair go and it hasn’t got any better.

Please Mr Dunne, admit you got the timing wrong. It was an idea which sounded okay in theory but simply doesn’t work in practice.

You lengthened the period of daylight saving, it’s time to shorten it again so that the change to summer time comes in summer, or at least spring, and not winter.

Yours in hope,

UPDATE: Tim Selwyn at Tumeke! agrees September is too early. He’s suggesting we go back to the first weekend in October. I reckon that’s still too early, but it would be better than what we’ve got now.


Sometime’s a cigar is only a cigar

May 14, 2010

An MP who had been upset by something John Key had done was at a meeting with him.

The Prime Minister, knowing he wasn’t in his MP’s good books, made a self-depreciating joke about it.

It was exactly the sort of joke he made about not being welcome at a Tuhoe dinner.

Part of his charm is his ability to laugh at himself and I’ve heard him make similar, self depreciating jokes several times.

I am certain that was all he was doing in this instance.

Not everyone sees it that way.

Over at Tumeke! Bomber and Tim think he was referring to cannibalism.  Deborah thinks it was ignorant and offensive.

On the other hand Kiwiblog says his own sense of humour is one reason he’d never be an MP;  Keeping Stock thinks people should lighten up and  was inspired to make a contribution to New Zealand Music Month. Something Should Go Here thinks it was a good joke.

Macdoctor thinks it was a clever but that would mean John was being deliberately offensive and I’m sure he wasn’t.

It was a joke, directed at himself and while I can see how some people might find offensive meaning in it I have no doubt that wasn’t his intent.

Sometimes a cigar is only a cigar but people will always be able to make something else of it.


Where do you go for numbers?

April 11, 2010

Tim Selwyn at Tumeke! has been weighing up the Yellow Pages and reckons they’re getting smaller because of the recession.

That may have something to do with it but I suspect increased use of the internet has also contributed to less advertising in phone books.

I use a web search more and more. It’s usually faster, more up to date, the writing is bigger and the right way up.

It may be several years since someone had the not very bright idea of putting the yellow pages upside down in the phone book but it still irritates me that I have to turn the book upside down and back to front to get a number.


ClustrMaps

March 6, 2010

It’s a year since I discovered ClustrMaps which records visitor locations and numbers.

An email last night advised me that the record for the past 12 months is being archived and a fresh map started.

If this didn’t happen the map would turn into a giant red blob.

For the record, here’s where visitors have come from in the last year:

UPDATE: on the subject of visitors Something Should Go Here has the February blog stats. His vary quite markedly from the sitemeter rankings at Open Parachute and Tim Selwyn’s blogosphere rankings at Tumeke!


Stat time of the month

October 9, 2009

It’s stat time of the month again when Tim Selwyn of Tumeke! calls for blog stats for the Blogosphere Rankings.

In September at Homepaddock:

Sitemeter recorded 13,478 unique visitors. Stat Counter more generously recorded 15, 117 unique visitors.

 There were 238 posts which received a total of 497 comments.

The four most commented on posts were: 33 on Coal to fertiliser plant for Southland? on 25.9; 17 on Kiwirail must pay its way on 30.9;   16 on Greenpeace has wrong target for wrong reasons on 17.9 and 12 each on  Last cab has the mana and the power on  15.9 and The honourable member on 29.9.

The top 10 referring blogs were:

nominister.blogspot.com 1,580
asianinvasion2006.blogspot.com 924
kiwiblog.co.nz/blogroll 340
nzconservative.blogspot.com 273
kismetfarm.blogspot.com 169
keepingstock.blogspot.com 138
pmofnz.blogspot.com 126
lindsaymitchell.blogspot.com 75
macdoctor.co.nz 70
roarprawn.blogspot.com 69

Thank you for popping in and an electronic bunch of daffodils to all who left a comment.

Sitemeter

homepaddock
This Year’s Visits and Page Views by Month

This Year's Visits and Page Views by Month

The graph from StatCounter doesn’t want to copy but here are the figures:

Page Loads                 Unique Visitors                                            First Time Visitors                           Returning Visitors
Total 21,862 15,117 8,918 6,199
Average 729 504 297 207

Stat time of the month

August 10, 2009

Tim Selwyn has posted the NZ Blogospehre top-20 for June.

Scrubone has the Half Done stats for July.

Open Parachute has done the NZ blog ranks for July too, with a change in methodology which puts his rankings more in line with the other two.

Being out of the country for all of July with a couple of weeks with no access to a computer had an impact on visitor numbers to Homepaddock. It also showed a relationship between the number of posts and number of visitors.

I’d expected fewer posts to result in fewer return visits but it appears to also have led to fewer unique visits too.

homepaddock
This Year’s Visits and Page Views by Month

This Year's Visits and Page Views by Month

However, while being in the top 20 is flattering, I’m very aware of that quantity deosn’t equal quality.

To stop myself taking too much from my place in the rankings, I note that spam outweighs real comments by about 10 to 1.

If that doesn’t work I look at some of the frequently used search terms which lead people to Homepaddock. They suggest people arrive by accident while  hoping for some very strange things which they definitely won’t find here.


Halfdone blog rankings

December 2, 2008

Scrubone at Something Should Go Here Maybe Later has compiled the Half Done November blog stats the top 20 of which are:

HD Rank Blog Last Tumeke Rank Alexa Alexa NZ Authority HD Score
1 Kiwiblog #1 62615 99 252 2
2 Whale Oil Beef Hooked #7 134113 276 93 40
3 The Standard #2 199522 268 111 48
4 Public Address #3 216349 794 174 99
5 Not PC #6 239877 538 95 136
6 No Minister #4 237322 433 64 161
7 Policy Blog: Chris Trotter & Matthew Hooton #10 202188 717 60 242
8 The Hive #5 241742 602 54 269
9 New Zealand Conservative #23 359340 557 52 385
10 Homepaddock #17 358477 763 68 402
11 Tumeke! #12 436170 807 73 482
12 Dim Post #13 355942 544 39 496
13 Cactus Kate #14 347784 806 46 609
14 New Zeal #16 414241 4467 215 861
15 Poneke’s Weblog #18 527522 1575 86 966
16 Roar Prawn #11 386652 861 32 1040
17 The Inquiring Mind #15 438737 1262 50 1107
18 Frogblog #8 94021 208 118 1326
19 Something should go here, maybe later. #34 811342 1529 66 1880
20 No Right Turn #9 907936 3070 129 2161

The blogosphere had some comings and goings in November – Roarprawn took a holiday, but has returned; Matthew Hooton and Chris Trotter left Policyblog but the latter moved to Bowalley Road, Anti-Dismal and The Hive closed and there have been two newcomers: Dear John and The Bull Pen.

I suspect Homepaddock’s 10th spot on the Half Done rankings is a lot higher than the Tumeke! rankings which Tim Selwyn is compiling now because I’ve noticed a fall in visitors and comments since the election.

Apropos of that in November:

* I wrote 226 posts.

* Received 14,414 visitors, including the most on any one day (1,160 on November 4th because of a post about the Melbourne Cup photo finish which must have shown up  high on Google searches).

* Had 378 comments, the most on a single post was 14 on November 10 about the blue wash being bad for democracy.


Tumeke! rankings for October

November 22, 2008

In response to a comment on the Tumeke! blogosphere rankings Tim Selwyn admits he counts the number of posts and comments manually.

That’s a huge task so it’s no wonder it takes two or three weeks for him to do it.

The results of his work show one new entrant in the top 20 – New Zeal moves up 7 to 16 which puts Homepaddock back one to 17.

Kiwiblog retained its first placing and was also first for the average number of comments.

Homepaddock was third for the number of posts – a place I don’t expect to maintain because I’ve been writing fewer posts since the election.

The biggest gain in the top 20 was No Minister which went up 6 places to 4th.

Among my other regular reads Roarprawn gained 2 to 11; Dimpost  dropped 1 to 13; Inquiring Mind  was steady on 15; Poneke  went down 1 to 18 but was 5th for the highest average number of comments (and second in that category for blogs done by individuals rather than a number of contributers.) If I was judging the quality of comments, Ponke would rate highly – he manages to attract mainly intelligent and often witty comments with few which confuse personal invective and debate.

Keeping Stock dropped just 1 to 19 in spite of a decline in the number of posts while cruising for a couple of weeks; and the Visibile Hand in Economics also dropped 1 to 20.

 The Hand Mirror was steady on 22, NZ Conservative was up 1 to 23 and also did well with the average number of comments, due in part to their popular Friday night free for all; Big News leapt 16 to 26;  Anti Dismal gained 8 places to 29 and Something Should Go here gained a couple to 34.

In a Strange Land was down 3 to 52; Monkeywith typewriter gained 1 to 56; exexpat dropped 6 to  59;  goNZo Freakpower  gained 9 places to 87, Cicero made a first appearance at 65 and Macdoctor debuted at 71.

I couldn’t find John Ansell on the list, I’m not sure if that’s because I didn’t look properly or his blog is too new to register.


Tumeke! rankings

October 23, 2008

Tim Selwyn at Tumeke! has updated the New Zealand blogosphere’s rankings with the top 20 for September.

Kiwiblog retains its well deserved first place.

Policy Blog (up 7 to 7th), Dim Post  (up 4 to 12th) Roarprawn  up an impressive 21 to 13th and Cactus Kate (up 1 to 14th) have overtaken Inquiring Mind  (down 4 at 13th) and Homepaddock which has dropped 4 to 16th.

Among my other regular reads, The Hive  is up 4 to 4th, Not PC  has gone up 2 to 7, No Minister  has dropped 4 to 10th,  Poneke  is down a couple to 17th, Keeping Stock has dropped a place to 18th and the Visible Hand in Economics is up 3 to 19th.


Views on the poll

October 10, 2008

Tim Selwyn at Tumeke! says no-one has told Centrebet about the latest Roy Morgan poll because the odds on Helen Clark winning have gone out to $4.50.

The Hive  notes The Greens & Act have earned their improved ratings.

No Minister   says this poll shows the Maori Party holds the balance of power.

Inquiring Mind  hopes it’s a rogue result.

Jafapete  says it’s game on.

Roarprawn also notes the Maori Party are king or queen makers.

Matthew Hooton has a poll of polls which is a little more comforting.

Cicero  is sceptical.

Frogblog thinks Roy Morgan is a sweet talker but wonders if the poll’s a rogue.

Tim Watkin says it’s out of step with other recent polls but John Key may have put an unlosable election at risk by trying not to rock the boat.

Bomber sees a seachange


Passing on the brillante baton

September 18, 2008

How exciting and heart warming it was to check in to Homepaddock yesterday morning and discover I’d been blessed with a Brillante Blog award.

It was bestowed by Deborah who’s In A Strange Land  where she writes intelligently and thoughtfully on feminism, motherhood, parenting, work,  politics, life . . . and occasionally posts on food with photos that cause weight gain if you look at them too long.

Once you get a Brillante you’re invited to spread the happiness by passing it on to blogs you enjoy.

The rules are simple:

1. Put the logo on your blog.
2. Add a link to the person who awarded it to you.
3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs.
4. Add links to these blogs on your blog.
5. Leave a message for your nominator on her/his blog.

So after a day of contemplation my nominees in alphabetical order are:

Annie Fox the nom de blog of Anna Wolf whose posts are warm, witty, passionate, frank, down to earth and full of life which is all the more remarkable because she’s writing about dying.

Phillipa Stephenson at Dig-N -Stir . There is on-going discussion about the difference between journalism and blogging. Pip does both supberbly, writing concise, well researched posts which reflect her knowldege and interest in the subject matter, her ability as a wordsmith and, where appropriate, her wit.

Dim Post for showing you can take a dig without getting dirty; and because every day is improved by humour.

Ex-expat who makes me think with posts that are educational, enlightening and/or entertaining.

Will de Cleene at goNZofreakpower whose posts aren’t frequent but point me to places I wouldn’t find by myself.

Adam Smith at Inquiring Mind  earns the award for the quotes and cartoons of the day by themselves. But there’s more: well reasoned posts on a variety of topics with special mention for not confining himself to New Zealand.

Inventory 2 at Keeping Stock for the quanity, quality, consistency and variety of his posts with extra points for his enthusiasm and sense of humour.

David Farrar at Kiwiblog because I can’t go past the godfather of the NZ blogosphere. It helps that I share many of his views, but even when I don’t, I admire his well written, researched and reasoned posts. He’s open about his bias but never bigoted.

Dave Gee at Life from Right Field because we southerners must stick together and with special mention for originality and pictures.

Macdoctor if he employs the same wit, intelligence, reason and compassion in medicine which he displays in blogging I’d be very happy to be his patient.

Monkeywithtypewriter , not just a token primate, he’s also got perception and a sense of humour.

The team at No Minister because they often amuse, sometimes shock and enable me to feel moderate. They get a special mention for visuals too.

Not PC for the art and architecture.

NZBC goes for quality rather than quantity and gets bonus points for humour and orginality.

Poneke for the quality of posts in which he uses the skills that made him an award winning journalist. Besides, you’ve got to admire a bloke who’s besotted with buses.

Busted Blonde at Roarprawn because she’s upfront, sassy, witty, in the know and shares it with style.

Bernard Hickey at Show Me The Money because he takes numbers and adds words that make sense of them.

Queen Bee at The Hive : she’s got contacts, she gets the facts and she’s the miistress of succinct posts with sting.

The team at Tumeke! for variety and originality. Tim Selwyn deserves an honourable mention by himself for doing the monthly blogosphere rankings.

Well the rules did say at least seven.

P.S. I have an aversion to chain letters or anything resembling them and I can do the maths: if seven people send something to at least seven people who send it …. it won’t be long to run out of blogs which haven’t got it. So should any of you on whom I’ve bestowed a Brillante want to change the rules or ignore them altogether, I won’t be offended, you won’t be courting calamity, your family and pets will be safe and the sky won’t fall in.


Tumeke blog rankings

August 21, 2008

Tim Selwyn has published the July rankings for the New Zealand bologsphere on Tumeke!

Kiwkblog and Public Address retain first and second places respectively.

The Standard and Whaleoil swap places at third and fourth.

Frogblog, Not PC and No Minister are steady at numbers five, six and seven and The Hive is up one place to eight.

No Right Turn is down one to nine. Tumeke!, Poneke, Inquiring Mind and Cactus Kate retain their places from 10 to 13.

Keeping Stock is impressively up 11 at 14; New Zealand Conservative has jumped seven to 15 and Homepaddock has moved up five to 16.

The Visible Hand in Economics is down one to 17, Liberty Scott is steady at 18, the Dim Post moves up 13 to 19; and The Hand Mirror is down six to 20.

Links to all these sites are on my blogroll.

Tim comments:

Apart from the bronze, the top dozen are rather static. The big movers seem to be the more right wing blogs that have picked up their traffic count and content output – the latter driving the former most likely: Keeping Stock, NZ Conservative and Home Paddock helping to displace left Labour blogs of Jordan Carter and Tony Milne.

The ranking is based on Alexa rank for traffic plus the number of posts, comments and links.

Thanks, Tim for the time and effort you put it working it all out and thanks to all of you who visit, link and comment and thereby contribute to Homepaddock’s improved place.


Tumeke! rankings: homepaddock 21

August 2, 2008

The Tumeke! blogosphere rankings of New Zealand political and news blogs for June are on-line.

Homepaddock is at number 21 which is nearly 100 places better than May, the first month it registered.

The rankings are based on a formula which takes into account unique visits, incoming links, number of posts and comments.

In light of that I offer my thanks to Tim Selwyn who does the comprehensive ranking, the other blogers who link to Homepaddock, the people who visit and those who comment – even when you don’t agree with me I enjoy your contribution to the discussion.

Homepaddock was launched very quietly at the end of April, the first link to a post came from  The Hive three weeks later which took the number of daily visitors from around 40 to nearly 300. Readership dropped back a little, with peaks when others linked to posts and the highest number of daily visitors came early last month in the wake of a link from Kiwiblog. (which is number 1 in the rankings).

The blogs from which most traffic comes are Keeping Stock  and No Minister; and visitors often call after they’ve been at Inquiring Mind or Poneke.

The stats counter always registers overnight visitors, presumably either insomniacs in New Zealand or people who live in different time zones.

Whoever and wherever you are, thanks for popping in.


%d bloggers like this: