A software program provided a glimpse of what is occurring and who is visiting the Putnam County Public Library's website.
Library Computer Engineer George Edenfield informed the library board at the March meeting about the statistics he adds to his monthly report.
Last year, Edenfield added a software program that tracks the website pages. This software allows him to track every single hit, or visit, the pages get, and this is what Edenfield reports to the board.
The software Edenfield uses provides him with two different forms. One form shows the monthly history of the website, while the other allows Edenfield to select the month he wants to see.
By using the second form, Edenfield can track a wide variety things. Some of these include when people are coming in and what Internet address, or Uniform Resource Locator (URL), the visitors are using.
Edenfield said it is nice to know where people are coming from. "It helps me."
Director of Community Relations Margot Payne asked Edenfield if he had to add where people are connecting to the website from. Edenfield said no because the software does it automatically.
The software can also track the links on the web pages that exit the website and where in the world people are visiting from.
George said that the software takes the Internet protocol address (IP address), a numeric address given to a computer connected to the Internet, from a visiting computer and pinpoints where that computer is located.
Because the software tracks several different items, Edenfield only reports on those that are of interest to the library or the library pays for.
Edenfield also informed the board that sometimes he receives a message from a patron or a visitor who say they cannot get on the website or not all the information is there. With the software, Edenfield can track what type of Internet browser and what type of computer program the visitor is using.
If someone tells him the website is not working for them, Edenfield can ask them "what's your operating system, what's your computer and what's your web browser version." Because Edenfield can track the different computer programs visitors use, he knows exactly what is working with the website rather than saying that it should work.
Edenfield provided the board with a copy of the web address to the site so it can go and view the information. This will also help the board answer any questions about the statistics Edenfield provides.
The board also heard a report about the Conversation with an Author Series from Payne.
The next session will be at 7p.m. Thursday, April 5 at the library with poet Kay Ryan, author of "Say Unce" and "Elephant Rocks."
A reception will follow.