Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Twitter Search As Sanity Checker

This morning I woke up to a whole stream of alerts about sites of mine being down. Ugh. Not a way to start the day. After some quick debugging, I noticed that all the hosts had their DNS with GoDaddy.

Was it possible that GoDaddy was having a major outage. Unlikely, but it's the best theory I had.

I picked up the phone and called GoDaddy, and their wait queue was something like 30 minutes. That's could be a sign of a major outage, or just an understaffed customer service center.

So I popped over to and searched for GoDaddy DNS. And I quickly got my answer:

ntheory: Looks like GoDaddy is having serious trouble this morning. Web interface down, DNS down...

Here's the page full of results:

While Google and most news sites are fast at updating, finding this kind of real time information is surprisingly difficult on the web. Two support this you need a way to have a great many folks publish information, and a powerful search engine to sift through it all - and in this case, Twitter has both.

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