UPDATE: I added a response from Google.
When Google bought Jaiku last October it spawned a great deal of talk about whether Google would be looking to throw its weight behind a micro-blogging service to lure people tired of Twitter’s downtime.
Well, that was a long, long time ago, making some of feel that we were in a galaxy far, far away.
In subsequent months, Google didn’t seem to be doing diddly with Jaiku and Google spokespeople refused to say what was going on with the service. Some feared Jaiku was going the way of Dodgeball, the mobile social network Google swallowed in 2005.
Now Jaiku is down for “server maintenance,” according to the Google property. Internet-savvy sleuths at Weeno Media’s Jaiku Invites have found trace routes that indicate the Finnish micro-blogging service, which lets users post an activity stream of status messages, recommendations, events or photos, is moving to the Google App Engine.
Check out the trace routes in this screenshot here that show App Engine as the Jaiku platform’s new residence.
Google confirmed Jaiku is now on a Google data center, as a spokesperson told me:
““We’ve been working on the Jaiku service over the weekend after finding an issue with one of our servers on Friday. As part of the solution, we’re moving the service to a Google data center. Users can expect Jaiku to be back up soon.” But the trace routes clearly indicate App Engine.“
Anyway, Jaiku Invites says this means we can expect:
“Well the number one thing we can expect is near 100% reliable service, no more down time for the API or the IM bot and the last of the 502 Bird. The next thing is open registrations for all, whether that will come in the form of a Google account or Jaiku account remains to be seen yet but I would safely say that we will see Jaiku and Google accounts merged into one in the near future. And finally we will hopefully see the launch of some new features and maybe even the public release of the current updated beta S60 client, I’ve also heard that a lesser featured iPhone client may on the horizon too.“
These are all great things for Jaiku users. My guess all users will sign in with Google accounts. Moreover, Google hasn’t met a port to the Apple iPhone it doesn’t like, so you can bet that Jaiku will work for the iPhone.
Google App Engine, which lets programmers run Python-based apps on Google’s vaunted, distributed infrastructure, is not impervious to outages; it’s suffered at least one since its launch in May, but most agree that it has a leg up on scalability-challenged Twitter, which is frequently down.
If Google App Engine is the new home for Jaiku, I wonder if this will start a trend at Google where more of its SAAS services are moved to the platform.