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I noticed that the sites' page on stackexchange.com has been changed, and by default sites are shown by balloons.

screenshot

What is not clear to me is why some sites are shown with a bigger balloon than other sites. For example, WordPress Answers has less questions, answers and users than Programmers, but its balloon is bigger.

What are the criteria used to show the sites on that page?

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In one of the earlier SE podcasts, Joel mentioned the amusing fact that when Christianity came out of beta it pushed all the scientific SE's off of the "main" page. –  Wayne Werner Aug 10 '13 at 12:32

3 Answers 3

up vote 14 down vote accepted

The sites are ordered by creation date, but then shifted around a bit (by the jQuery Isotope plugin) so they all fit tightly in the container despite being different sizes.

The site sizes are subject to change, but hard-coded for now, and loosely based on a combination of factors, including site traffic, whether we want to "feature" a particular site, Jin's whims, etc.

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I am glad unicorns are not involved, for once. –  kiamlaluno Mar 1 '12 at 18:01
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What?! No unicorns? –  Cody Gray Mar 1 '12 at 19:36

From a conversation in the SF Comms room

the dev tells me that the site order is roughly based on the site's age, though there is some other fuzzy logic involved.

and later in reply to the above

tis true. I've seen the code. public List getFrontPageOrder() { return fuzzificate(sites.OrderBy(s => s.Traffic)); }

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fuzzificate ...really? Must be pre-code review –  Cody Gray Feb 29 '12 at 20:51
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Yeah, that Java style camel casing would have gotten someone fired. We're a Pascal casing shop. –  Kevin Montrose Mar 1 '12 at 4:02

It seems to be that it is based on traffic.

If you look at that link, all of the sites with bigger bubbles are the highest on the list.

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Although, now that I look at it, this might not be the case. –  amanaP lanaC A nalP A naM A Feb 29 '12 at 19:28
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It's not traffic, as Wordpress is larger than Programmers (say). –  ChrisF Mar 1 '12 at 15:15

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