Wait Wait Stats Update: Panelist Appearances (Part 2)

When the latest version of the Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me! Statistics Page gets published later today, you might notice a couple of new additions. The one that that I have finished implementing is displaying the percentage of appearances that each panelist has gotten first, tied for first, second, tied for second and third place. This should be a better indicator on how well a panelist has done based on how often their appeared on the show. The other additions to the page hint at an upcoming feature that I am currently coding up: statistics for both the show hosts and scorekeepers. At this point, I’m not sure exactly what statistics will be displayed. I don’t have a timeline on when I will have the new feature ready for release.

WWDTM Live Taping

Tonight, Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me! came to Portland, Oregon for their third live taping of their show at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall. Being slightly obsessed with the show, I had to go and try to meet Peter Sagal, Carl Kasell and the gang. The seat that I got was about 9 rows back and had a great view of the stage. Before the show started, the audience was handed out a sheet of paper that had three questions that people would answer, fill in their name and hand back. More on this later. Tonight’s panelists were Peter Grosz, Roxanne Roberts and Roy Blount, Jr. (who has been one of panelists all three times that Wait Wait has been in Portland). Let’s just say that there were many, many hilarious moments and several not-so-PG jokes and comments; of which, only a few will probably …

Wait Wait Stats Update: Panelist Appearances

One of the features that I had been wanting to add to the Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me! Statistics Page was to display when a panelist first appeared on Wait Wait and when was the panelist’s most recent appearance on the show. A fellow Wait Wait (and Paula Poundstone) enthusiast also asked about adding the feature as well. So, after a little bit of tinkering around with SQL queries, I was able to work out a view that I could query from the page’s PHP code. At first, the query included every show in which the panelist was on, including repeat and best of shows. The problem with that is not all best of shows have panelists associated to them, so the dates would not be as accurate as possible. A compromise was made to exclude appearances on repeats and best of shows. The …

Wait Wait Stats Update: Jumping Down to a Specific Show

Up until now, there was no way to create a link that goes to a certain show on the Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me statistics page. Instead, you would have to go the page and scroll down or search for the show’s date. Now, you can create links that refers to a specific show’s entry. To link to a specific entry, you can use the following URL template: http://wwdt.me/stats/#s<YYYYMMDD> Replace “<YYYYMMDD>” with the show’s four digit year, two digit month and two digit day. For example, to create a link that points to the spot for the April 23, 2011 show, the URL you would use is: http://wwdt.me/stats/#s20110423 I know, it’s a small update, but I hope someone finds it useful. :)

Mo Rocca, The World’s Worst Obstetrician

During the second panelist round of Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me! that aired the weekend of 2011-06-18, the discussion lead to Mo Rocca saying that having a Hula dancer in the same room as a mother giving birth would help the mother relax. This led to Luke Burbank asking if this would be blogged on “Mo Rocca, The World’s Worst Obstetrician dot net”. I didn’t get to listen to that segment until several days later and noticed that the MoRoccaTheWorldsWorstObstetrician.net domain had not been taken… yet. So, I decided to register the domain and set up the site to redirect to my Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me! statistics page. Well, this week’s Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me! show was all about listener favorite segments and requests. Many of the listeners wanted a lot of Mo Rocca moments, but Peter and Carl included Mo Rocca’s Hula dancer moment. …

Wait Wait Stats Update: Page Loads

I have made a significant change to how the Wait Wait Stats page is served up to visitors. Up until earlier this morning, each page view required the server to process and parse through all of the data, then serve up the results. Each time the page is processed takes about a second and requires the server to send out the contents out in its entirety, even if there hasn’t been any changes. That’s a waste of time and bandwidth (both mine and yours), along with processor cycles. With the new change, the server generates a static version of the page every Saturday at 13:00 (Pacific Time) and each request of the Wait Wait Stats page will go through a simple script that determines if the static file is newer than original dynamic script file. If it is, the server provides the last modified …