Google Slows to a Crawl

    May 14, 2009
    WebProNews Staff

Update: Google has addressed the issue on the Official Blog. The company says:

An error in one of our systems caused us to direct some of our web traffic through Asia, which created a traffic jam. As a result, about 14% of our users experienced slow services or even interruptions. We’ve been working hard to make our services ultrafast and "always on," so it’s especially embarrassing when a glitch like this one happens. We’re very sorry that it happened, and you can be sure that we’ll be working even harder to make sure that a similar problem won’t happen again. All planes are back on schedule now.

Original Article: In case you didn’t notice, Google had a bad hair day on Thursday. Users noticed a remarkable slowdown in nearly every facet of Google’s vast empire—from Gmail, to Google Search, Google Maps, Google Apps, Google Reader, Google News, Google Docs, Google Analytics, Blogger, AdSense, Images, etc.

Google Twitter and Facebook, which both seemed to be doing fine, turned up a popular stream of complaint, distress, and panic over the Google outage. Frantic people who were addicted to Google Reader, trying to check their e-mail, or just wanting to get a piece of the news were first fidgety, and later enraged, when all things Google went kaput.

The outages seemed to be localized in the U.S. European and Asian users were plugging along just fine. In some places, the outage lasted just one hour. In other places, workers were struggling all morning. At approximately noon on Thursday, the panic had subsided, and somewhere in the depths of Google, some technician was wiping the sweat off his brow.

The outage, while a temporary inconvenience, points to a gargantuan issue: the world is dependent on Google. Just how integral is Google in our daily lives? More, perhaps, than we realize. The vast Google horizons have extended to affect how we check the weather, keep up to date with the news, communicate with the ones we love, and find what we’re looking for. The Thursday scare was a wake up call to the level of dependence, or independence, we may enjoy (or not enjoy) from Google’s ubiquitous presence. A phrase comes to mind:  “when Atlas shrugged…” Perhaps this was the day that Google shrugged.

Soon, Google should have a report on what happened.