We're mulling over longterm improvements to the Site Activity Meter you see on your profile page, in discussion threads, and in Technical Q&A. We'd like to evolve it into a more meaningful "quarterback rating" for members, one which encompasses more than just raw activity.
The new meter would average out several rating factors (we've got a few dozen we're looking at) into three main categories: Visibility, Activity, and Respect. Activity would remain pretty close to what it is now, but would track more types of activity on the site. Visibility would track how much you've told us about yourself, mostly through the Profile. Respect would be the most valuable, in my opinion. Respect would be a measure of how useful your site activity has been to other members.
All the Respect factors would be derived, you couldn't game them with massive numbers of posts or by flooding your Profile fields. Things like number of Tech Q&A answers accepted, or maybe a conversion from TechPoints, might be part of this rating.
By clicking on the composite meter, you'd get a page or a popup of a member's component meters, letting you know whether their overall rating reflected a lot of Respect, or just a lot of Activity. It might help give some qualitative credence to posts, and would open up some interesting doors for us to reorganize community content and reward more members with TR swag.
Again, just thinking out loud. Now, I'm going to go enjoy my holiday weekend.
Jay Garmon has a vast and terrifying knowledge of all things obscure, obtuse, and irrelevant. One day, he hopes to write science fiction, but for now he'll settle for something stranger — amusing and abusing IT pros. Read his full profile. You can also follow him on his personal blog.