Thanks to my favorite site on the planet, I discovered a new service called whos.among.us which provides a really cool AJAX based web stats app. The setup is very simple — it only requires you to embed a picture on your website to begin tracking visitors. There’s no setup or registration required. My favorite part is the Firefox plug-in that let’s me see who’s on my websites in real-time.
In order to “sign up”, all you have to do is load their showcase page, click the widget you want and copy/paste the code into your website. The code generally looks something like this:
<a href="http://whos.amung.us/show/nff4aa4e"><img src="http://whos.amung.us/swidget/nff4aa4e.gif" alt="web stats" width="80" height="15" border="0" /></a>
The easy setup does have one downfall — what if you lose the above code and thus, lose your key? The key is important because it is used both in the URL of their stats site and in your Firefox plug-in, should you choose to use it. If you lose the super random key, you lose your stats (unless Google has a cache of your HTML).
As I e-mailed myself the 8-character code and saved the URL to delicious, I began to ponder. Because the key, in this case nff4aa4e changes each time the page is loaded, would it be possible for me to create my own 8-character key — something that would be easier to remember than a random set of alpha-numerics. As it turns out, the answer is yes. I plugged in “netnerds” as my character key and my stats worked perfectly.
If you hover over the picture, you can see that the link points to an easy-to-remember URL: http://whos.amung.us/show/netnerds. My Cajun site uses something similar — realcajun was one character too long so I deicded to go with mmmcajun. Someone should totally take kthnxbai while it’s still available ;)