Warning: These are my thoughts, and you may not necessarily be liking them...
Let's take a look at some numbers first:
At the time of this writing, you have...
- 11 Days into beta
- 13 Avid and 269 total users (an avid user is anyone with over 200 rep)
- 55 Questions posted
- 37 Visitors a day
- 19 Questions on the first day... Yes I counted by myself
Great! These are numbers, so what do they mean? Let me tell you what I think they mean, especially when it comes to this site's health:
This site looked incredibly interesting when I first met it on Area 51. I was kind of hoping to be more active, but within the last week, I fractured my wrist, got a free waxing from asphalt, and pretty badly hurt my knee. The result of a cycling accident. But even then, it still isn't really an excuse.
In terms of site health, here's some issues that I've been seeing:
What's up with questions?
Face it: I've seen practically little to no activity that I would've liked to see both on meta and on main. 19 Questions on the first day of private beta is sort of... meh. 55 Questions over the span of 11 days doesn't look too good. Is there a main focus with questions? Many questions will of course be artificial, but there is no excuse for them to be bad either. I haven't really seen distinctive questions: Can't I ask most of these on a general science site? Or even on Open Data SE?
Is there a community?
Don't take this the wrong way: There definitely is a community, but is there an active community? I haven't been seeing much voting, and not much participation on meta. It's okay if you don't have experience starting up SE sites, there are other community members that do, and are more than happy to assist with any site-building issues that the community has. However, I should be seeing much more activity when it comes to providing answers to questions on meta: Any question should really be seeing an answer or two within the first few hours.
Voting is another important part too. Many SE sites die off because nobody votes. Don't underestimate the power of voting: It helps sort out the good questions/answers from the not-so-good questions/answers. They allow you to unlock privileges, mainly those within moderation. If you haven't noticed, the rep required for privileges is significantly less than even a private beta. So it's also important that you use them wisely. See a question that you think is off-topic? Close vote it. Raise it on meta: You always one a community feel during these critical site moments.
13 Avid Users isn't a whole lot either: Sites should be able to get a decent amount of good users: Open Source I think went public with 51 avid users in 20 days. If you don't have a lot of avid users, it means a whole lot less that the rest of the community can do. There is a direct correlation with voting here: No voting, no users can really attain privileges.
Will this site make it?
To me, I don't think so. Community activity and engagement is what killed numerous prospective sites. It looks like the lack of involvement will kill this one too.
This post has been migrated from the Open Science private beta at StackExchange (A51.SE)