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Author Topic: good way to measure total Bitcoin users?  (Read 2046 times)
Jered Kenna (TradeHill)
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November 30, 2011, 04:34:12 AM
 #1

Does anyone have a good way to measure Bitcoin users?

This could be something like:

Total client downloads
Active nodes

Or any other solid indicator that could be cited. I'm sure someone has a method.
I suppose we might be able to pull something out of traffic.

Ideally I'd like to be able to graph this and do some other analytic on it if they haven't already been done.
I saw a good graph on nodes but it ended several months ago.
I know there isn't a perfect way due to the nature of Bitcoin but there has to be a way to get a decent estimate that could be quoted.

Thanks in advance for the help.

Jered

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November 30, 2011, 05:15:08 AM
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http://sourceforge.net/projects/bitcoin/files/stats/timeline?dates=2011-01-01+to+2011-11-30

tl:dr: almost 1 mio downloads from sourceforge this year

http://bitcoinstatus.rowit.co.uk/

not open source, but has quite a few charts on active nodes, their location, client version etc. for the last ten weeks.

tl:dr: about 35k nodes active at least once per day right now

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November 30, 2011, 05:33:01 AM
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(Like the previous respondent...) I glean some (disappointing) info from this site, but obviously cannot vouch for it.  I would assume that it is pretty accurate when it is working:

  http://bitcoinstatus.rowit.co.uk/

I would think that as a professional courtesy, the operators of some of the more successful on-line wallet like services (instawallet comes to mind) could give you some rough numbers on their stats.  Between the two, I imagine that actual use numbers could be relatively close to reality.

I don't know about other folk, but I have a small amount of coins in a few places (including instalwallet), but do most of my real work from a bitcoind running on my own hardware.  You run the risk of double-counting I would guess.



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November 30, 2011, 11:14:45 AM
 #4

I don't have any stats, but want to mention what may be a growing type of user in the future. Last night I talked to a player who told me he had 80BTC but didn't know what they were.  Shocked  He'd won freerolls at various sites and didn't even know there was bitcoin software you could use on your own. I don't think this is a substantial segment of users, but I expect it will be growing. I think the future is a bunch of merchants sending coins from their nodes and not a lot of individuals running them. I could be wrong, but it seems like a lot of people trust sites more than they trust themselves or just don't want any hassle. Maybe Electrum and similar will keep more individuals packing their own coin.

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November 30, 2011, 02:21:27 PM
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This is interesting... people using bitcoin without even knowing what bitcoin is. That means bitcoin is USEFUL and people use it for real, not cause "omg bitcoin will destroy bank, revolution gogogo"
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November 30, 2011, 02:33:44 PM
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I could be wrong, but it seems like a lot of people trust sites more than they trust themselves or just don't want any hassle.

You are absolutely correct.  Look at the millions of people that use Vonage, when they could probably do everything using their computer.  But people like something convenient, and easy, and something that doesn't make them have to know how it all works to be able to use it.  In other words, they like having a company to call if they need help, instead of trying to figure it out themselves.


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Jered Kenna (TradeHill)
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November 30, 2011, 09:44:57 PM
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I could be wrong, but it seems like a lot of people trust sites more than they trust themselves or just don't want any hassle.

You are absolutely correct.  Look at the millions of people that use Vonage, when they could probably do everything using their computer.  But people like something convenient, and easy, and something that doesn't make them have to know how it all works to be able to use it.  In other words, they like having a company to call if they need help, instead of trying to figure it out themselves.



Exactly. This is what I was saying in another thread. It's like explaining gateways and interchange to someone that just wants to buy something with a credit card. All this stuff we talk about that's important now will be irrelevant to the average user in some time.

Thanks for all the suggestions, I can always count on this community, I love it.

Jered

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December 04, 2011, 11:31:19 PM
 #8

Jered,

I propose http://bitcoinstats.org/count.html .

That info is gleaned from Addr messages that propagate through the network. A caveat is that, naturally, this is only a count of users who are actually running a Bitcoin client. Many users, I assume, don't leave Bitcoin open all the time. Perhaps it would still be useful.

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December 05, 2011, 02:21:34 AM
 #9

I count myself as an active Bitcoin user but my wallets are open probably for about 20 minutes a week. It's important to take this into account when using active node counts as an indicator.

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December 05, 2011, 02:30:24 AM
 #10

I wonder why the node counts on the maps here:
http://www.blockchain.info/nodes-globe?series=48hrs
are always so low?  (rarely over 10K for the 48hr map)

I'm not sure how many nodes are being displayed on the map at:
http://www.weusecoins.com/globe-bitcoin/
But having looked at for a few months, it seems hardly (if at all) to update.

Does anyone know of any other world bitcoin node maps which are kept up to date and seem to show the vast majority of nodes?

A time-series map would be awesome. I'd love to watch the growth as you move a slider month by month!

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