Good day for assessment analytics

October 21, 2009

Wrapping up an assessment today and I’d like to give props to Web Log Explorer, which I’ve been using for some ad hoc analysis of IIS log files. The parsing is a bit slow given that I’m running Parallels on a Mac, but not by much, and the options to export the data are quite good. Not sure where log file analysis is headed, since when I started consulting it was all the rage, but today the notion that all things point to "the website" is rather naive. The IIS log files, like so many of them, weren’t customized or extended, so there isn’t much to work with, and the servers are load balanced, so if I really wanted to dig in I’d have to weave them together, and that takes time and processing power.

Even my own tracks today were a bit crazy — in and out of virtual machines and three browsers, downloads and transfers through Remote Desktop, use of TweetDeck instead of going to Facebook and Twitter … things like that. How would you ever track that sort of thing, the new form of "browsing" and interaction? Comments to this question are welcome.

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