@readwriteas Each validated site has its own API. There isn't an all-site API at the moment (to save having to implement throttling etc. to prevent abuse), but one could be implemented easily, or you could use the Solr API directly. In this case you'd probably want to auto-insert and auto-validate all writeas.com submissions. Shouldn't be a big customisation. Would be nice to try and do it in a resusable way, e.g. for other such platforms. Let me know if you want more info.

@readwriteas It should be fairly straightforward to launch an instance if you've a server with Docker (steps at github.com/searchmysite/search). Domain ownership validation etc. all work off domains, but you can configure some domains to allow subdomains, e.g. on production I have INSERT INTO tblSettings (setting_name, setting_value) VALUES ('domain_allowing_subdomains', 'writeas.com'); to allow <user1>.writeas.com, <user2>.writeas.com etc. rather than having 1 user owning the whole of writeas.com.

@duckhp Thanks. I'm still optimistic the internet can be made a better place, and there certainly seem to be lots of others with that aim too. The difficulty is that, in this new dark age of digital feudalism, the internet lords have amassed mind bogglingly large cash reserves to defend their fiefdoms, and they are supported by vast numbers of vassals who have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo (SEO practitioners, people who work in the AdTech industry, etc.)

@duckhp YaCy is certainly interesting, although it was very slow last time I took a look.

@Zach777 Thanks for the kind words. It would be great if you could submit some personal and/or independent sites you like - it may help others find some things they find interesting too.

@wizzwizz4 Yes, I know AWS is about as expensive as it gets (and not exactly flavour of the month either). I'm just using it at the moment because I'm familiar with it from my day job to be honest. There's nothing at all specific to AWS though, so it would be easy to shift. Not too worried about trying to reduce costs at the moment though - main focus is on building it out, increasing adoption, and testing whether a search engine can be sustained by anything other than advertising.

I've summarised how much searchmysite.net (the open source search engine and search as a service) has cost over the past 6 months, and estimated how much it may cost to keep going in future: blog.searchmysite.net/posts/se Short summary: it is (perhaps) surprisingly expensive to run a search engine and search as a service. The good news is that there is a plan to cover costs (without resorting to advertising). Let's see if it works.

@Subdevil Was thinking the same thing the other day when I was trying to find out what the error code on my boiler meant - all the results were longish videos rather than a page from a manual or something where I could find the answer quickly. I think the charitable answer is that most content creation is on mobile devices now and it is easier to upload a video than type something up on a phone, although the cynical explanation is that it maximises eyeballs on those all important adverts.

Today I noticed: When I make pretend phone calls I have my fist by my cheek with my little finger out towards my mouth and my thumb out towards my ear, but when my children are making pretend phone calls they place flat palms towards their face.

@humanetech @sir Yes, I was careful to call it the Silicon Valley ethos rather than HN ethos. I did write on HN a months or so back that "I have a theory that IT is split into 'doers', i.e. the people who do things, and 'talkers', i.e. the people who talk about doing things. By definition, you hear from the talkers more, perhaps because the doers are too busy actually doing things ... in HN's defence, you do hear more from actual doers here than perhaps anywhere else."

@sir That's the problem - the whole Silicon Valley ethos of "fake it till you make it" and evading regulations because "it is better to ask forgiveness than permission" encourages fraud. But when there is so much money being made it is very difficult to stop.

I posted this to IndieHackers and HN. Top post in the blogging section on IndieHackers is from someone making $8K MRR from "productized SEO content marketing" (I think that means generating blogspam) so I don't think that's the target audience:-)

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Wow, my advert-free search engine comment got a fair bit of negativity on Hacker News. Apparently I should think about all the poor writers trying to eke out a living from the advertising on their blogs. Not that I was saying advert-driven search engines should be banned - librarians don't put shopkeepers out of business because they're doing different things.

@murtezayesil I wonder how many of those are still active. I clicked on a few and edited the URL to get to the original site, and most were gone, and others last updated a very long time ago.

searchmysite.net is now open source: blog.searchmysite.net/posts/se . Post includes: Why aren’t other search engines open source? What open source licence is it? What are the future plans?

@mike I did try to attend two telephone-based meetings at the same time once, with a different phone to each ear and only one unmuted at a time, but it was surprisingly difficult.

@bekopharm @fribbledom Well there were all those mail order lists of public domain, freeware and shareware disks, plus the demoscene, long before Windows.

This post contains details of the most recent round of relevancy tuning for searchmysite.net, completed following user feedback and the submission of many more sites. It is possible to detail how results are ranked because of the model designed to keep out and remove the financial incentive for spam: blog.searchmysite.net/posts/re

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