So long, Technorati  AUG 19 2005

That's it. I've had it. No more Technorati. I've used the site for, what, a couple of years now to keep track of what people were saying about posts on kottke.org and searching blogs for keywords or current events. During that time, it's been down at least a quarter of the time (although it's been better recently), results are often unavailable for queries with large result sets (i.e. this is only going to become a bigger problem as time goes on), and most of the rest of the time it's slow as molasses.

When it does return results in a timely fashion for links to kottke.org, the results often include old links that I've seen before in the results set, sometimes from months ago. And that's to say nothing of the links Technorati doesn't even display. The "kottke.org" smart list in my newsreader picks up stuff that Technorati never seems to get, and that's only pulling results from the ~200 blogs I read, most of which are not what you'd call obscure. What good is keeping track of 14 million blogs if you're missing 200 well-known ones? (And trackbacks perform even better...this post got 159 trackbacks but only 93 sites linking to it on Technorati.)

Over the past few months, I've been comparing the results from PubSub to those of Technorati and PS is kicking ass. Technorati currently says that 19 sites have linked to me in the past 6 days (and at least four of those are old and/or repeats...one is from last September, fer chrissakes) while PubSub has returned 38 fresh, unrepeated results during that same time. (Not that PubSub is all roses and sunshine either...the overlap between the result sets is surprisingly small.)

While their search of the live web (the site's primary goal) has been desperately in need of a serious overhaul, Technorati has branched out into all sorts of PR-getting endeavors, including soundbiting the DNC on CNN, tags (careful, don't burn yourself on the hot buzzword), and all sorts of XML-ish stuff for developers. Which is all great, but get the fricking search working first! As Jason Fried says, better to build half a product than a half-assed product. I know it's a terrifically hard problem, but Figure. It. Out.

As for the acquisition rumors, I don't know who'd buy such a mess, but if someone does, I look forward to them improving it to a usable level. Pretty much everyone I talk to in the industry thinks the site sucks and we've just been waiting for it to get better because, well, it would have to at some point, wouldn't it? Well, I'm tired of waiting. Goodbye, Technorati...your url will darken the door of my browser no longer.

Update: For the short amount of time I've been using it, IceRocket's blog search seems to work quite well. Thanks to Kevin for pointing me in that direction.

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