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    Happy new year!

    By Caelum,

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    Happy new year!
    I promised a post with fun statistics about JKHub several months ago. First I didn't get around to doing it, and then I didn't want to steal the thunder of the Halloween and Christmas contests, but New Year's Eve seems like the perfect opportunity to post it. Before I move on to all that though: happy new year from all of us JKHub staff people!


    So how many people played JKA in 2016?
    Honest answer: it's difficult to say. For example, about 412 players are playing as I type this according to Steam, but 123 humans are on a server according to information from the JKHub master server. It's safe to say there are at least 100 people ingame at (almost) any given time though.

    A better question to ask is: are there more players or less players? It's a better question because I can actually answer it: the number of JKA players seems to be growing slightly. Here are the number JKA players (including SP) over time according to Steam, over the past 2 years:


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    Steam JKA players (incl. SP) over the past 2 years. Source: SteamDB

    Can you tell when the EP7 movie was released?


    Now, the same data, over about 5 years (starting July 2012):


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    Steam JKA players over the past ~5 years. Source: Steamcharts

    It's incredibly hard to see on that last chart because it's kind of horrible, but average number of ingame players steadily grows from about 150ish players (2012-2013) to over double that (2016), and while the movies clearly help, that growth is happening even if you ignore the movies.


    Now, nobody knows how that translates to Multiplayer. Steam players are just one data point, and who knows what percentage of these players are playing Multiplayer? At the very least though, it suggests JKA isn't dying as people often think: it may even be growing a bit.


    Site activity
    What about JKHub itself? One of the best way to measure it is number of posts. A lot of statistics are subject to bad numbers: both counting number of registrations and number of views include an unknown, but big percentage of automated bots. We're mainly interested in humans.


    Excluding today, our forum saw a total of 27346 posts this year. The most active months were January (3440 posts), June (3210) and April (3050). On average, that's roughly 75 posts a day. Note that a 'post' here is defined pretty broadly - I'm pretty sure our forum software counts things like status update replies and file comments as 'posts' too.

    Here's how that compares to previous years:
    2016: 27,346 posts
    2015: 22,945 posts
    2014: 10,730 posts

    For those interested, here is an obnoxiously large graph charting this out monthly over the past 4 years:


    Website activity is definitely still going up each year.

    Browsers & OS
    So which browsers and operating systems do JKA players use? Again, it's difficult to measure: an unknown percentage of website views are from automated bots, headless browsers, and general non-human scum. The closest approximation I can give is by measuring the browsers & operating systems used specifically to download mods though, leading to the following charts:


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    Note: 'Mozilla' is not 'Firefox', it's an assortment of misc browsers


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    Note: really old OSes like Windows 95 are probably spambots spoofing their user agent header rather than people actually using that OS

    All in all, it seems like this year has been a great year for both JKA and JKHub in terms of activity. I wish I had even more statistics to share, but unfortunately, I don't, so I'll leave it at this. Looking forward to next year, we hope to release the JKHub 2.0 redesign & modernizations in 2017, and the upcoming month or two will be especially interesting to those of you who want to see more articles and news. :)

    For now, happy new year, and don't explode yourselves with fireworks. That would reflect badly on next year's activity statistics.

    Click here to view the article

    Secret Santa 2016

    By Circa,

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    It's that time of year again! The holidays! Every year we try to put on some kind of event related to Christmas, since that's the majority of what people celebrate around here. If you celebrate something else, you can still get into the spirit of giving by participating in this year's holiday event!

    Secret Santa is back!
    We've done a Secret Santa event in the past (maybe a couple times?) and it went well, so we're trying it again this year! If you're unfamiliar with how Secret Santa works, basically you get the name of a person participating and you must create a mod or graphic of some kind for that person. They can choose to provide a list of items they want, and you can choose to make something from that list or not. Some more details below.

    The rules
    • You must be a registered member.
    • You must be able to create a mod in JKA or JK2 of some kind or a graphic (signature, wallpaper, etc), even if it's something really simple.
    • You must sign up, by sending a PM to the Secret Santa account, saying you're participating and/or a list of what you want.
    • You must have the time and motivation to complete your gift on time.
    • You must sign up by December 1st.
    • You will receive a PM from that same account containing the person and their list, on December 2nd.
    • You will have until December 23rd to submit your gifts to the Secret Santa account via PM, once again.
    • You will receive your gift on Christmas Day, December 25th.
    What should you ask for?
    It's better to make a list of simple things that people can make, not things that you've been spamming the requests forum with. If you put "make me JK4" or "i just want rend2" obviously that won't happen. Here are some examples:
    • a forum avatar or signature
    • a mod of Rosh saying everything backwards
    • a JKA-related wallpaper
    • a giant toothbrush saber model
    • a mod that replaces the chat icon with a Christmas wreath
    • a simple code mod
    What should you NOT ask for?
    • JK4 (seriously people...)
    • rend2
    • a new playermodel of some character
    • a huge map (small maps might be okay, depends)
    • some kind of mod that involves heavy coding
    • a mod that makes "Circa" replace every mention of "Rosh"
    Bottom line: don't ask for something that would take months or years to make. If you don't have time to make something elaborate, your secret santa won't either.

    If you fail to make your gift, you force the staff to scrounge up something last-minute, which isn't cool, so please make sure to make something. Also, no physical or monetary gifts or address exchanging for this. Mods and graphics only.

    And again: you can only participate if you can create a gift too. If you can't you will be denied entry into the Santa zone. :P

    That should cover it, so if you're up for it, sign up and get your list in! :santa:

    Click here to view the article

    Faster, more reliable downloads

    By Caelum,

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    Downloads are pretty important.
    At the risk of stating the obvious: downloads are pretty important to JKHub. Every day, over 300 individual people download about 25 GB worth of mods from us. In total, that's between 700 and 800 GB worth of downloads monthly. Many people visit JKHub purely for the file downloads.

    When JKHub was first created, we used Dropbox. Hosting mod downloads on a Dropbox mirror was the sanest and most easily scalable option at the time. Dropbox worked really well, but now, a good 5 years later, there are better options available.

    Introducing the new CDN
    So you know my hosting business I never shut up about, right? One of the things I've started offering is a basic CDN-like service. In short: a service that lets you download files from one server in a distributed network. You download files from a server near your home, instead of a server that could be on another continent.

    Moving JKHub downloads to that infrastructure has been one of my main projects over the past month. A few days ago, I finished it. We're no longer using Dropbox now.

    So how are downloads better now?
    Here are the advantages of the new downloads infrastructure:
    • Faster downloads. This is the most important part: downloads should be a lot faster than they were before.
    • More reliable downloads. You know how Dropbox would occasionally break a file (or worse: all files), and spit out some error instead of serving your download? That's won't happen anymore.
    • Improved insight. Those statistics I mentioned at the top of this post? 300 individual people downloading 25 GB of mods daily? We didn't have any way to know things like that before. Now, we do. Knowing things like that lets us share cool statistics over time, and makes it easier to make educated decisions about JKHub's infrastructure. It also lets us track abuse and stop people trying to artificially inflate their mod's download counts much more effectively.
    Not all downloads are accelerated yet.
    Right now, about 1 in 3 downloads are served by the new infrastructure and fully accelerated. That percentage will increase a lot over time, but it's an automated process that takes a while to happen. By the end of this month, almost every single download should be served by it. Here's a fun graph:
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    Finally, a sneak peek
    So that's been one of the main things I've been working on over the past month. With it out of the way, here are some other things I'm planning to focus my attention to in the coming month or two:
    • Moving JKHub itself to a new web server for faster page loads, improved security, and more. This won't get its own news post, but it's important anyway.
    • Changing the way news articles work, in a bid to have much more JKA and community related news & articles.
    • Website design changes & modernization: taking the first small steps towards next year's JKHub 2.0 project.
    • More.
    For now though: enjoy faster and more reliable downloads. :)

    Click here to view the article

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