a september pattern at sourceforge?

Last September, right about the time we started up OSSmole, Sourceforge sent out a monthly email newsletter that included this observation:

(9/20/2004) Welcome to the September sitewide email. September is typically our busiest month for new traffic on SF.net. Students are arriving at college and getting on high speed connections. Open Source developers and consumers of Open Source software are returning from
their summer vacations. If you are back from vacation, it's good to have you back.

I was of course reminded of The Long September on usenet. Early participants on usenet began noticing that every September a new wave of cluless college students would flood in and ask dumb questions and make life miserable for a couple of months each year (until 1993 when usenet was made available to AOL users and so-called "The Long September" was born).

The SF message above talks about lots of "new traffic" on SF.net during September, but I'm not sure how "new traffic" is defined. It could mean generic web site traffic, as in "new users visiting the web site". Or it could mean "new projects being built", or it could mean "new users signing up". Or it could be some vestiges of September memories from usenet. Or, most likely, some combination of all of these things.

I decided to put together a little graphic showing one of these possibilities (new projects being created, per month) for the years 2000-2004, with the figures for September highlighted in green:

click to enlarge

I think it's safe to say that SF must be defining "new traffic" as something besides just "new projects being created". Because when I look at this data, I don't see September as a particularly interesting month. October on the other hand... now that looks interesting....