?

Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

DEATH OF MUCK PREDICTED, @WALL AT 11.

So on FurryMuck, there is a process called con-census.muf that keeps track of some population statistics. It keeps, among other things, a record of the maximum concurrent online player count for every day. I've some twelve years of this data, now. I did some processing on it, to get the average player max for each month since september 1992, and I made a graph of it.


09/92: 092 *********
10/92: 064 ******
11/92: 088 ********
12/92: 088 ********
01/93: 099 *********
02/93: 109 **********
03/93: 114 ***********
04/93: 132 *************
05/93: 112 ***********
06/93: 112 ***********
07/93: 113 ***********
08/93: 118 ***********
09/93: 131 *************
10/93: 131 *************
11/93: 130 *************
12/93: 136 *************
01/94: 138 *************
02/94: 168 ****************
03/94: 171 *****************
04/94: 173 *****************
05/94: 174 *****************
06/94: 179 *****************
07/94: 180 ******************
08/94: 181 ******************
09/94: 177 *****************
10/94: 182 ******************
11/94: 190 *******************
12/94: 176 *****************
01/95: 180 ******************
02/95: 190 *******************
03/95: 185 ******************
04/95: 194 *******************
05/95: 184 ******************
06/95: 191 *******************
07/95: 233 ***********************
08/95: 230 ***********************
09/95: 262 **************************
10/95: 268 **************************
11/95: 276 ***************************
12/95: 260 **************************
01/96: 297 *****************************
02/96: 302 ******************************
03/96: 298 *****************************
04/96: 327 ********************************
05/96: 320 ********************************
06/96: 325 ********************************
07/96: 323 ********************************
08/96: 318 *******************************
09/96: 327 ********************************
10/96: 326 ********************************
11/96: 328 ********************************
12/96: 326 ********************************
01/97: 340 **********************************
02/97: 346 **********************************
03/97: 334 *********************************
04/97: 347 **********************************
05/97: 344 **********************************
06/97: 340 **********************************
07/97: 337 *********************************
08/97: 341 **********************************
09/97: 393 ***************************************
10/97: 387 **************************************
11/97: 391 ***************************************
12/97: 386 **************************************
01/98: 415 *****************************************
02/98: 444 ********************************************
03/98: 445 ********************************************
04/98: 438 *******************************************
05/98: 440 ********************************************
06/98: 436 *******************************************
07/98: 449 ********************************************
08/98: 431 *******************************************
09/98: 436 *******************************************
10/98: 425 ******************************************
11/98: 429 ******************************************
12/98: 431 *******************************************
01/99: 455 *********************************************
02/99: 441 ********************************************
03/99: 428 ******************************************
04/99: 449 ********************************************
05/99: 419 *****************************************
06/99: 443 ********************************************
07/99: 413 *****************************************
08/99: 429 ******************************************
09/99: 431 *******************************************
10/99: 446 ********************************************
11/99: 451 *********************************************
12/99: 457 *********************************************
01/00: 482 ************************************************
02/00: 500 **************************************************
03/00: 485 ************************************************
04/00: 477 ***********************************************
05/00: 472 ***********************************************
06/00: 488 ************************************************
07/00: 480 ************************************************
08/00: 480 ************************************************
09/00: 484 ************************************************
10/00: 500 **************************************************
11/00: 492 *************************************************
12/00: 470 ***********************************************
01/01: 501 **************************************************
02/01: 497 *************************************************
03/01: 483 ************************************************
04/01: 477 ***********************************************
05/01: 363 ************************************
06/01: 455 *********************************************
07/01: 435 *******************************************
08/01: 472 ***********************************************
09/01: 478 ***********************************************
10/01: 476 ***********************************************
11/01: 458 *********************************************
12/01: 442 ********************************************
01/02: 476 ***********************************************
02/02: 482 ************************************************
03/02: 465 **********************************************
04/02: 459 *********************************************
05/02: 456 *********************************************
06/02: 468 **********************************************
07/02: 462 **********************************************
08/02: 464 **********************************************
09/02: 451 *********************************************
10/02: 446 ********************************************
11/02: 434 *******************************************
12/02: 437 *******************************************
01/03: 455 *********************************************
02/03: 474 ***********************************************
03/03: 458 *********************************************
04/03: 449 ********************************************
05/03: 428 ******************************************
06/03: 435 *******************************************
07/03: 425 ******************************************
08/03: 434 *******************************************
09/03: 426 ******************************************
10/03: 423 ******************************************
11/03: 413 *****************************************
12/03: 407 ****************************************
01/04: 427 ******************************************
02/04: 437 *******************************************
03/04: 431 *******************************************
04/04: 413 *****************************************
05/04: 404 ****************************************
06/04: 407 ****************************************
07/04: 396 ***************************************
08/04: 387 **************************************


May through July of 2001 have anomalous data due to emergency server moves and network downtime.

What can we infer from the remaining data? Well, FurryMuck's peak was apparently in January of 2001, and it appears to be losing active players at a slow, but steady rate since then. To remove any seasonal bias from the sample, lets just look at the january stats for each year since 2001.

01/01: 501 **************************************************
01/02: 476 ***********************************************
01/03: 455 *********************************************
01/04: 427 ******************************************

Picking August, we see an even more pronounced effect:

08/01: 472 ***********************************************
08/02: 464 **********************************************
08/03: 434 *******************************************
08/04: 387 **************************************

Drawing a trend from the overall graph, and estimating the effects of fall-off due to the corollary of the black hole effect - players tend to go where players are; players tend not to go where players aren't - I would extrapolate that in January of 2010, the average player max will be about 150 players.

But just remember, there's Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics.

Comments

( 27 comments — Leave a comment )
cjthomas
Aug. 17th, 2004 07:51 pm (UTC)
Possible explanation.
Conjecture as to an explanation:

This more or less represents the time since the dot-com crash. If we assume that people are still mostly introduced to this "telnet" thing in college, it could just reflect fewer people becoming CS majors due to it no longer being seen as a "free money" career.

Holes in this are that the number of people online is still growing wildly (and there are plenty of ways to find the MUCK via the web), and that the number of CS students could very well still be growing as well. So, it's pure idle speculation }:>.

-Deuce
revar
Aug. 17th, 2004 07:53 pm (UTC)
Re: Possible explanation.
I believe that Tapestries' population has actually grown in that time period.
(Deleted comment)
revar
Aug. 17th, 2004 09:17 pm (UTC)
Re: Possible explanation.
For a better comparison, you would need to factor out the folks who are more than a couple hours idle, as FM has the idle timeout.
sebkha
Aug. 17th, 2004 07:52 pm (UTC)
Massive though it is, I'd expect the MUCK to collapse into a white dwarf instead of a black hole -- a small core population until the end of time. :) (I tend to think of FurToonia as having done this, although I might be getting a skewed impression as result of timezone effects.)
revar
Aug. 17th, 2004 07:55 pm (UTC)
This was kind of my thought as well. It'll probably level out at some low level, with mostly idle folks.
(Deleted comment)
michellbasler
Aug. 17th, 2004 10:28 pm (UTC)
I can see your perspective very well. While my husband is rather furry, I'm really just a friend of furries and while I started out avidly role-playing on FurryMUCK at first, I wound up just logging in to talk to friends. Eventually most of them had AIM accounts or were on other MU*'s I actually RP'd on more and so I just spent time with them there. Then, in 2001 I became pregnant and neglected the muck long enough my character was removed from the database due to idleness. When I had to get a new character I was told it wouldn't work because my server was AOL and there was some rule. Now, I was ready to have my husband app a new character from work but some guy who considered himself on the old group from FM told me that 'If You'd just be a real person and get yourself a real ISP like real people it wouldn't be a problem'. Sorry. The guy was old smelly ugly and despite that not annoying me at first he was very very rude and so I decided that I didn't need to bother going the round about way, if I was going to wonder which person I ran into was actually him.
nipper
Aug. 17th, 2004 11:35 pm (UTC)
I logged in to Furcadia once, and I think it said that there were about 3k chars online! I don't know if that's accurate, what the averages are, or the number of players, but it seems a lot.

It could be that the 'fandom' is growing/diversifying, but that many of the new/younger folks are going to LJ/DA/IM/webforumns/Furcadia for RP/chat/socailising etc rather than mucks?
loopter
Aug. 18th, 2004 07:03 am (UTC)
Furcadia isn't a real muck. It is just not, alright? Don't ask why :P
revar
Aug. 18th, 2004 07:34 am (UTC)
Furcadia apparently does get that many users, yes.

Given Tapestries' continued growth, I cannot just write off FM's slow population decay as being due to a diversifying fandom.

My personal theory is that the current policy restrictions on new registrations, and the general social climate on FM are both contributing to the decline.
cjthomas
Aug. 18th, 2004 08:41 am (UTC)
My personal theory is that the current policy restrictions on new registrations, and the general social climate on FM are both contributing to the decline.

Give Points and Slipstream wizbits again and a license to run amok. And bring popcorn };>.

-Deuce
hakeber
Aug. 18th, 2004 03:05 pm (UTC)
I'd buy a ticket to see that!
(Deleted comment)
cjthomas
Aug. 19th, 2004 11:50 am (UTC)
militarizing Helpstaff

If we were militarized, I certainly didn't get the memo. What incident(s) are you referring to?

Re. registrations from free email accounts, bear in mind that it only takes one jerk to ruin the pool for the legitimate users. There are certainly enough people that bear FurryMUCK a grudge for me to believe that one of them was making enough trouble for the rule to be put in place. Not really much that can be done about this problem.
(Deleted comment)
impytoes
Aug. 18th, 2004 05:02 am (UTC)
Everyone will leave and there I'll be, idling in that damn park... heh.
revar
Aug. 18th, 2004 07:42 am (UTC)
If it's any consolation, you'll probably have a number of other die-hard folks idling back at you. :) *earcritches*
doodlesthegreat
Aug. 18th, 2004 07:09 am (UTC)
There's also another item starting to draw off people from the mucks, such as myself. 3-D MMORPGs such as There and Second Life offer interesting possibilities to those who want more than just text on a screen. At the moment, the pull is not that strong, but it is steadily increasing as the games become better known.
revar
Aug. 18th, 2004 07:38 am (UTC)
Eh. I've been to There and Second Life. Interesting places, but not really the sort of apps I can leave up in the background for idle chat. I've several friends who also tried these places out, but only a couple of them really stuck with them.
shatterstripes
Aug. 18th, 2004 08:38 am (UTC)
Twelve. Years. Of this data.

Twelve years.

Geeze.

I've noticed that the feel of the public parts has changed a lit, just in the times I've been there. Log on in the middle of the day and the Park used to be a weird mix of IC and OOC with no clear average age. Now? Mostly-OOC mothers.

Mothers.

Furry fandom has changed a lot.
shatterstripes
Aug. 18th, 2004 08:48 am (UTC)
Oh, and I'm part of that slow drain, too.

Old circles deteriorating to the point where there's only one or two people keeping you there, and little desire to go find new ones. Aging population having less time for mucking. Lots of new places that're more specialized.

Dunno.
hakeber
Aug. 18th, 2004 03:08 pm (UTC)
Not all of us mothers are able to get onto the muck much anymore. Work and kids will do that to a person.
bluejaey
Aug. 18th, 2004 09:20 am (UTC)
Population Decay: OMG!
Yeah.. I have noticed it myself. That is to say, Without the aid of graphs. :P I am always online.. *disconnected after ten minutes, or disconnected randomly, But I'm there I say!* Nothing new seems to be happening. Or maybe I am not looking. Most of the coders I know coded for a while.. then stopped.. after they felt that everything that could be done has already been done, And nothing they could code would really be breaking any new ground. ^.^;

I tried to be the evil 'Jaey.. And show Revar "TradeWars 2002" (TM) a while ago, Simply because I believed that upon observation, Inspiration would occure. :P Bah. Nobody seems to have the time or energy for it now. *I certainly don't. at some point I was going to explain it off as old age or something. o.O But I am only 18.*

Bah. As well as Coders being burnt out, I have noticed that most people simply look at new mucks in a pessimistic manor nowadays. :/ No one willing to put the energy into it..(Building.. Coding.. Mostly coding. :/ I failed in a recent attempt due to lack of ability to find all of the basic libraries.) or the risk.. (of no one liking the idea, ect.)

Hmm...

oh yeah!

As for Taps. It sells it's product using Sex. :P Need I say more?
cjthomas
Aug. 18th, 2004 10:20 am (UTC)
Re: Population Decay: OMG!
I tried to be the evil 'Jaey.. And show Revar "TradeWars 2002" (TM) a while ago, Simply because I believed that upon observation, Inspiration would occure. :P Bah. Nobody seems to have the time or energy for it now. *I certainly don't. at some point I was going to explain it off as old age or something. o.O But I am only 18.*

I've been meaning to overhaul the wands program for years, but haven't done it. I've been meaning to write a Really Good "nav" program for more years, but still haven't done it };>.

I can't speak for other coders, but for me, the projects that are interesting to do take enough time that they're put off in favour of other projects that I'm already doing elsewhere, or in favour of loafing with friends =^.^=.

As for MUCK atmosphere, I, like others, tend to spend time hanging around in specialized rooms with groups of people that I already know, as opposed to hanging out in the Park welcoming new furs like I did for so many years. Partly this is schedule - I'm usually MUCKing in the background while doing work, which means a lower-traffic room is needed - and party because hanging out with a group I like is more fun than hanging out with a random cross-section of the MUCK.

What can be done about this, or if anything _should_ be done about this, is left as an exercise. The "wa" program is probably a very useful step in the right direction, as it lets people find each other and find groups with similar interests quickly, as opposed to wandering at random looking for people. Beyond that, I don't know what to suggest.
meig
Aug. 18th, 2004 11:18 am (UTC)
Re: Population Decay: OMG!
I just have grown out of it I think. It used to be the main place I came to keep in touch with my friends, but with IM and the like, that is much easier these days and doesn't have TEH DRAMA that you frequently see online.

tuftears
Aug. 18th, 2004 01:29 pm (UTC)
It's actually lasted a good while longer than I would have expected. I expected some people to set up a Cool New MUCK and everyone would flock there, but actually what seems to have happened is that people just gradually trundle off to other venues. Tapestries is one venue - anything that's being actively maintained will probably gain more.
lynn_onyx
Jun. 28th, 2005 03:31 pm (UTC)
Did you do an update of this post for 2005 figures?
revar
Jun. 28th, 2005 08:47 pm (UTC)
Current data (as of last month) is here.
An excerpt showing just each January, is here.
( 27 comments — Leave a comment )