Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Partychat turns 5k!

Short version: Partychat hit 5,000 active users today! We're super excited - it's a special number for us (see below for why) and a big thanks goes out to Mihai & Neil for their work improving Partychat over the last year!

Long version: Back in April 2007, Mihai and Michael made a bet - the first to build a product, in their spare time, with 5,000 users won. At the time, Mihai was about to launch plusplusbot and Michael was working on something called "statusfest" (sorta like Google Buzz - it tracked your Google Talk status, had a "like" operator, and promoted popular statuses). In our words back then:
["mihai"] just to be clear, the site is still not ready for public consumption
["mihai"] so I haven't beaten yet
["ihavemisplacedmypants"] there's still a lot of time until tomorrow...
["mihai"] first one to be posted about on or bolin changeblog respectively wins
["mihai"] first one to not suck too
["ihavemisplacedmypants"] i think the second criterion is more important
["alkie"] first one to 1K users?
["ihavemisplacedmypants"] that seems like a more fair metric of not sucking
["mihai"] sure
["ihavemisplacedmypants"] though can we choose a number that's bigger than's readership
["dbentley"] Hahaha.
["ihavemisplacedmypants"] 5K?
["ak"] mihai++ for roping bolin into a contest to get statusfest done
woot! mihai->20 (for roping bolin into a contest to get statusfest done)
["ihavemisplacedmypants"] mihai-- for roping bolin into a contest to get statusfest done
ouch! mihai->19 (for roping bolin into a contest to get statusfest done)
["ak"] hey now
["ihavemisplacedmypants"] let's settle on a number of users, though, that defines the goal/winner
["dbentley"] Define user?
["mihai"] for, user that has done an increment/decrement
["mihai"] for, user that has his/her status monitored
["mihai"] fair?
["ihavemisplacedmypants"] fair
["ihavemisplacedmypants"] 5K?
["mihai"] sure
["ihavemisplacedmypants"] ok, it's on
["mihai"] what's the prize?
["ihavemisplacedmypants"] eternal glory?
["bitchlaplap"] can it involve cross-dressing
ak would try to join the contest, but is skeptical that partychat could ever get to 5k
plusplusbot eventually reached 1k users, but the 5k user goal was more elusive than we thought.

Over the last year, Mihai and Neil put a lot of work into improving Partychat, taking it from an XMPP bot running out of my apartment to a properly hosted, distributed system (thanks to Google App Engine) with many more features (and, subsequently, more users).

We started with a pretty loose definition of "user" - if we count every person to ever say something in Partychat, Partychat reached 5k users back in February 2008. "People who ever said something" is a pretty lame measurement though. A better metric of usage is 7-day active users - people who've said something in Partychat in the last week. Back in February 2008 we still had fewer than a thousand 7-day active users. Today we can proudly say that Partychat has 5k 7-day active users.

Below you can see how Partychat usage has grown spectacularly in 2010. If you squint, you can see that we've also hit 2.5k 1-day users, which, you know, is pretty awesome. Thanks to all you users for your continued bug reports, feature requests, and additions! We had a couple of beers last night to celebrate, we encourage you to do the same =). See you at 10k!