Home Yahoo Kills SearchMonkey, Rolls Back BOSS, Says YQL Will Live

Yahoo Kills SearchMonkey, Rolls Back BOSS, Says YQL Will Live

One year ago, Yahoo announced that it had signed a deal to replace its own search engine with Microsoft’s Bing – but the big question for us was what that meant for all the incredible search-related programming infrastructure Yahoo makes available to outside developers. Today Yahoo began offering the beginning of an answer to that question.

In a post on the Yahoo Developer Network blog, VP Social Platforms at Yahoo Neal Sample broke the news.

  • Yahoo’s semantic search enrichment program SearchMonkey will be closed down October 1st. High hopes that the company’s throwing its weight behind structured markup for web pages would herald a new era of a ubiquitous semantic web never panned out. In March of 2008 we wrote, And Nerds Became Kings: Yahoo! to Announce Semantic Web Support. Sorry! Search Monkey was to be “a component of a major overhaul at Yahoo! across all of its properties to ‘rewire’ for the social graph and data portability.”
  • White label Build Your Own Search Service (BOSS) may no longer be free and will begin to show Bing results. BOSS has incredible potential and if it lives on, that’s good news. Unfortunately, instead of people all around the world singing from the rooftops about this super-cool program, 18 months after BOSS launched the public reaction remains tepid.
  • Geo: “We will be evaluating all our Geo, Maps, and Local APIs–updating or shutting down some of them, and working with our strategic partner, Nokia, on others. We will work with our developer community to ensure a smooth transition in all instances and we will share more details about these decisions in September.” Bummer.
  • MyBlogLog APIs will be shut down. The future of the service is unclear, Yahoo says. Because, you know, streams of data made up of the web history of people, tied to their associated social networks and even their faces – that’s just not very valuable data. (I’m rolling my eyes and crying at the same time while typing this.)
  • YQL, the powerful Yahoo Query Language favored by developers who want to pipe data from one API around the web to another, is safe because Yahoo used it extensively on its own home page. That’s good. People would freak out if YQL shut down.
  • Social bookmarking service Delicious was one service we were concerned about last year but it’s no longer ruled by the Search team. In fact, we’re told that Delicious has seen a fresh infusion of new blood and has big plans for the near-term future.

It’s hard not to be disappointed by news like this, but perhaps some innovative engineers will be set free to work on other things. And perhaps some unfulfilled dreams will be allowed to die, so that they might be reborn to try again elsewhere.

Paul Graham’s essay about what happened to Yahoo is worth reading, as well. (As is this counter argument from Yahoo evangelist Tom Hughes-Croucher.)

There are other cool projects in the works at Yahoo. I hope they find more success than these ones have, with the exception of YQL.

About ReadWrite’s Editorial Process

The ReadWrite Editorial policy involves closely monitoring the tech industry for major developments, new product launches, AI breakthroughs, video game releases and other newsworthy events. Editors assign relevant stories to staff writers or freelance contributors with expertise in each particular topic area. Before publication, articles go through a rigorous round of editing for accuracy, clarity, and to ensure adherence to ReadWrite's style guidelines.

Get the biggest tech headlines of the day delivered to your inbox

    By signing up, you agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy. Unsubscribe anytime.

    Tech News

    Explore the latest in tech with our Tech News. We cut through the noise for concise, relevant updates, keeping you informed about the rapidly evolving tech landscape with curated content that separates signal from noise.

    In-Depth Tech Stories

    Explore tech impact in In-Depth Stories. Narrative data journalism offers comprehensive analyses, revealing stories behind data. Understand industry trends for a deeper perspective on tech's intricate relationships with society.

    Expert Reviews

    Empower decisions with Expert Reviews, merging industry expertise and insightful analysis. Delve into tech intricacies, get the best deals, and stay ahead with our trustworthy guide to navigating the ever-changing tech market.