A few owners find that the Popular Posts gadget, that supposedly will display any selected number (1 - 10) of the most popular posts for a blog during a given time period, is sometimes short the number selected.
With only 6 posts displayed out of 8 posts selected, it is possible that the desired 8 posts may be displayed - if 10 posts are selected, and the display is refreshed. On the other hand, with only 9 posts displayed out of 10 posts selected, it's not possible to increase the selection to 11, to compensate for the "missing" post.
The gadget display discrepancy appears to involved a popular post having been removed from active status, during the time period selected.
I am displaying 10 posts, for this blog, right now - though my selection is subject to change.
The Popular Posts display is generated in several steps.
- The pageviews are sorted and totaled, for the time period ("Most viewed") selected.
- All time
- Last 30 days
- Last 7 days
- The pageview counts for the desired number of posts ("Show") are extracted (1 - 10), and the display is formatted.
- As the display is being formatted, any non existent posts are discovered, and not displayed.
- With the gadget formatted, the display will contain the selected number, less any non existent posts not displayed.
It's better to display a short list, all active posts - than a complete list, mixed.
It's apparently better to display a short list comparing only posts online when the gadget is displayed, then to display a complete list with one or more posts being incorrectly sequenced because they were not online when the gadget is displayed.
Stats dashboard displays have their own oddities. This is yet one more reason why Stats gadgets should be viewed on their own contexts.
If you sometimes delete a popular post, and your Popular Posts gadget later shows a short display, you now know why.