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So far we've had several questions about what this site is about, what we can tell people about it, and how to tell people about it. The logical followup is: who do we tell about it and where? In other words, where do we find experts from the field so that we can spread the word about the site, and what can we do to get in touch with them in a way that will make a favorable impression?

Based on the stats on the Area 51 page, our traffic levels haven't budged much since the public beta opened. Of course it's early enough that I'm not worried about that, but we do need the site to grow if it's going to be viable. So we will need to think about expanding the community. I'm basically posting this as an open call for promotion ideas in that vein.

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Some more techniques which usually work:

  • Make use of a huge traffic on SO, thus:
    • Go to StackOverflow and make comments featuring SciComp on questions which may be on topic here.
    • Go to StackOverflow and flag questions which should be here to be migrated.
  • Ask/select good question and reddit/tweet/hn/facebook/g+/digg it.
  • Tell people around you -- I often spam about SE when I make some course or when someone is asking me some questions which would fit.
  • Don't expect that any of this will work in a dead sason like current holidays.
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  • $\begingroup$ Good list. But "Ask/peak"? $\endgroup$ – Faheem Mitha Dec 22 '11 at 13:31
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    $\begingroup$ +1, for mentioning the holidays. They, alone, may account for most of the drop. But, we should not be complacent. $\endgroup$ – rcollyer Dec 23 '11 at 1:35
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Good question. The question rate seemed to be steadily dropping since the beta began. It is now down to 2 or 3 questions a day, which is a little worrying. Also it remains mostly an applied math site. There are almost no questions from computational statistics, for example.

One thing that I wonder is whether the moderators of stackoverflow, stats.sx, and even cstheory.sx are really aware of scicomp, to the extent of redirecting questions here. I've noticed there is a tendency for SE moderators to close questions rather than redirecting them, even when the question would be suitable for a sister site. Perhaps someone should talk to them, but I'm not sure who. Currently scicomp doesn't have moderators, right?

As a concrete example, some of the R questions on stats.sx might be on-topic for scicomp.

Another possibility would be to suggest to the moderators or high-rep users of those other sites to perhaps blog about the existence of scicomp. I think lots of people don't know it exists.

Yet another possibility would be for someone to post/advertise about the existence of this site on suitable computational lists.

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    $\begingroup$ There are indeed no moderators on this site yet. But mbq, dmckee, and myself are moderators on Physics (and mbq is also a Statistics mod), so we can get the word out to other moderators if there is something specific to tell them. Personally I think advertising the site on computational mailing lists, if it's appropriate to do so, would be a good idea. $\endgroup$ – David Z Dec 22 '11 at 6:30
  • $\begingroup$ @DavidZaslavsky: Thanks for the comments. Perhaps you could just check the other moderators know the site exists, to start with? r-help is pretty active, and is one of the place the computational statistics community goes. Perhaps write to the list? $\endgroup$ – Faheem Mitha Dec 22 '11 at 6:35
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    $\begingroup$ I can assure you I'm looking forward to migrate something from stats, though nothing has yet appeared and migrating old stuff is a terrible idea. $\endgroup$ – mbq Dec 22 '11 at 11:19
  • $\begingroup$ @mbq As have I - sadly, the epidemic model questions that are really best suited for here crop up only rarely. $\endgroup$ – Fomite Jan 2 '12 at 22:06
  • $\begingroup$ I am a relatively active member of cstheory.SE and I was completely unaware of this site until yesterday when I came across it by accident. So I definitely think you should advertise to cstheory.SE, especially if the intent of this site is to be research-level. $\endgroup$ – Artem Kaznatcheev Jan 10 '12 at 3:50
  • $\begingroup$ @ArtemKaznatcheev: Thanks for the comment. Is anyone on this? @David? $\endgroup$ – Faheem Mitha Jan 10 '12 at 4:09
  • $\begingroup$ I mentioned this site on the cstheory chat. I am not too familiar with the scicomp community, so I mostly gave my first impression. Hopefully this will bring scicomp to the attention of some of the cstheory regulars. $\endgroup$ – Artem Kaznatcheev Jan 11 '12 at 0:08
  • $\begingroup$ @FaheemMitha: I did mention this site in the moderator chat, but it didn't get much of a response. I'll keep an eye out for anyone asking about migrating questions that might be on topic here and let them know where to steer them. $\endgroup$ – David Z Jan 12 '12 at 19:31
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I have advertised the site on NA-Digest (in December) and SIAM-CSE (last week). Both generated a noticeable bump in the visits/day for a few days, but not a lot of new questions, as far as I can tell.

I'm also putting comment pointers on relevant questions in other SE sites. Need to do the same for MO.

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  • $\begingroup$ Perhaps it will help over time... $\endgroup$ – David Z Jan 12 '12 at 19:31
  • $\begingroup$ Things have been trending upward significantly in the last few days. $\endgroup$ – David Ketcheson Jan 15 '12 at 19:19
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For what it may be worth, see https://meta.mathoverflow.net/discussion/1274/new-computational-science-site-on-stackexchange

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    $\begingroup$ I posted that after reading this question. So now we've come full circle :) $\endgroup$ – David Ketcheson Jan 15 '12 at 10:10
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I've sent out an advertising email to my colleagues here at AICES (RWTH Aachen), which is a graduate-level program in computational engineering science. I hope that this will also lead to some more hits.

Another idea would be for someone to send emails to DCOMP (American Physical Society), the COMP group at the American Chemical Society, and the CACHE group at AIChE. They might have other communities of people interested that might not see the already-posted announcements.

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  • $\begingroup$ The CAST division of AIChE is another potential venue. $\endgroup$ – Geoff Oxberry Jan 14 '12 at 23:31

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