Posted by marcos on Thursday, November 15, 2007
[ UPDATE 9:50 AM PST, 14 hours later: Newsmap saved! ]
Newsmap has been running for about 4 years now, it's been heavily linked from all around the internet and has always had a really high number of daily hits. Since I've never required registration, I couldn't tell the exact number of recurring users. All this time I've kept Newsmap completely free of advertising, and I've used my own pocket money to pay for the really high bandwidth costs.
As of today, November 15th 2007, Google decided to pull the plug on it by shutting down access to the parser I use to scrape their HTML. Newsmap basically reads their site and takes all the bits needed to create a one screen visualization of all the news they themselves scrape from the rest of the internet. Google offers RSS feeds for some of their pages, however, the data required to create the visualization does not exist there. The Newsmap HTML parser is key to grab Google News data.
It'd be such a pity to see it end here!
If you feel you'd like to see Newsmap live longer, please add your name and location in the comments. Hopefully we'll get to a good number so they'll notice us.
If you have a blog, please help me spread the word by linking to this post.
And of course if anyone out there has a friend at Google with whom I could have a word, please hook me up! If they gave me a chance to talk, I'm sure they'll understand.
Thank you so much!
[ UPDATE 11:45 PM PST]
I'm now in touch with the Google News team.
We are actively trying to figure something out.
Thanks everyone for all your support!
[ UPDATE 9:50 AM PST, 14 hours later]
We are back on track!
Newsmap is back online and very healthy.
Infinite gratitude goes to the Google News team for their quick response.
And again, thanks everyone for your support!
If you notice any further hiccups please let me know.