What it’s like to be #1 on Hacker News

Author
Jodok Batlogg
Filed under
Date
April 21, 2014

Don’t get us wrong. We always wanted to get to the number 1 position on Hacker News. We thought we would plan ahead, craft a careful post, do a product announcement and then get there. But instead, it just happened on April 18th.

We were drumming up votes for our appearance at The Next Web Conference, so we could get on stage and demo, and then one of our users just posted us on Hacker News.  Instead of dropping into the abyss, we stayed on the Hacker News for more than 20 hours, which was a great ride, especially with the high quality comment thread.

Crate on Hacker News #1

April 18th, 18:56:38: Hacker News Leaderboard with Crate on #1

What’s it like

It made us think:

  1. As we were deliberating what exactly we’d say about Crate and its offering, the post made the decision for us: “Big Data SQL in real time”, just at about the same time we were thinking that “big data” is too much of a buzzword.
  2. The comments made us think more. The comments were detailed, technical and opinionated. Here’s a link to the comment thread.
  3. The metrics are amazing. From a sleepy pre-launch site we go to:
    • Number 1 trending GitHub repository in the Java section, #8 on the global leader board.
    • A reach that’s global – except Greenland…
    • 19,684 user sessions in 12 hours
    • 42,823 page views - peak was 4.500 HTTP requests/s. Thanks to Fastly CDN we were safe.
    • 390 people on Twitter mentioning @cratedata (stars, mentions, retweets). We now follow all of them: https://twitter.com/cratedata/following
    • Our HipChat channel was flooded with GitHub stars (158). That's how we realized we got featured somewhere :) Crate Data HipChat channel

We even got a celebrity tweet:

Marc Andreessen favorites our Tweet

Most importantly, we added 461 new Crate downloads. The numbers may not be as high as we had hoped in terms of conversion, but they are sure a sign of what’s to come.

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