(Updates at the bottom)
Technorati is dressing up a dying sick body in fancy new clothes. Who cares, if the body fails it’s basic functions?
The latest new feature, Blog Finder meets more criticism than welcome: here, here, here, here, to list just a few, but it’s all so irrelevant. Let’s face it: it really does not matter, whether this latest feature works or not. There’s an old IT axiom: Garbage In, Garbage Out. If you have the wrong data to begin with, it really does not matter how many layers of extra services you put on it, the output is still worthless.
Everybody seems to be talking about performance problems; for example here, here, here, here, here and here, but IMHO not getting data out of Technorati is by far not the worst; getting the WRONG information is far, far worse. Techorati has major problems parsing the main pages of blogs built on standard templates of major bog platforms, and the result is the result is entries in their metadata where:
- the body of a post appears with the title of another one (mostly, but not always, the previous one)
- the body of a post is associated with tags of another one.
Now, let’s talk about communication: emailing techorati support is a complete dead end. Bloggers quickly learned the trick: emailing Dave Sifry (CEO), or perhaps Kevin Marks, or tagging blog entries with their names used to result in a response, and sometimes even corrective action. That’s no longer the case. I understand. The CEO personally emailing back is not exactly scalable communication. But why doesn’t Technorati have a searchable Knowledge Base, or at least a FAQ of known issues and solutions? This is really Customer Service 101.
The SiliconBeat, Joi Ito, and many others welcome Dave Sifry’s post discussing the problems: “ Once we got our keyword search infrastructure back on track, our infrastructure team has been working 100% on fixing Cosmos search. Our current plan is to have Cosmos search back up and running by the end of September .“
Sorry, Dave, but your keyword search is far from fixed, it still results in timeout in more than half the cases.. in fact the Technorati homepage is often unaccessible. On this chart a response time above 3 seconds is considered critical – wow, I am generally happy getting anything below 30 seconds, if at all. On the input side, Technorati claims to index posts within minutes, yet several influential bloggers complain they have not been indexed for weeks. Dave strikes an honest tone and discusses some of the issues, but frankly, I doubt he really knows the status of his own business.
All this makes me wonder if Technorati is an “idea company” – they truly are Innovators of the Blogosphere, just can’t execute. This makes me wish BL Ochman’s recent “hot tip” about an imminent buyout were true.
Update (9/10) This is pathetic: New Orleans is listed as #6 on the Tehcnorati Top Search list, yet clicking on it results in this:
Update (9/11) Can’t log in to Technorati account, infinite loop asking to log in again and again …