SOAP Search API - passive support from Google - CHANGES

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Manfred

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Dec 14, 2006, 7:12:00 PM12/14/06
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SOAP Search API - passive support from Google - what has changed ?

In short:
--- no new SOAP Search API keys anymore
--- the developer's kit has been deleted

In detail:
---
>From the Google SOAP Search API (Beta) home page at
http://code.google.com/apis/soapsearch/index.html
two items have been deleted from the menu:
Download
Create Account
You can look at the original version of the download-page:
http://209.85.135.104/search?q=cache:Hc9oEBM5OrgJ:code.go%C2%ADogle.com/apis/soapsearch/download.html+developer%27s-kit+soapsearch&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1
---
Frequently Asked Questions
Technical Questions
6. How do I get a license key?
We are no longer issuing additional license keys for
the SOAP Search API, and encourage you to use the
AJAX Search API instead. For developers who are already
using the SOAP Search API, we've kept the documentation
live on this site.
---
Answers about the developer's kit can still be found in the
FAQs, but the code is no longer available.

Manfred

Jacob

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Dec 15, 2006, 4:59:24 AM12/15/06
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Is there any way Google can be convinced to allow access to the result
set that is sent to the AJAX API without using the API. What I'm asking
is the response from an AJAX search arrives in the form of a JSON
formatted result set (I'm assuming - perhaps it's XML formatted). Is it
possible that Google will allow users to access this JSON information
directly (hopefully in XML format).

For the purposes of this post I tried bringing up the page
http://www.google.com/search?q=google+ajax&output=xml and it gives a
polite but firm 'not allowed' message. Since it didn't just ignore the
output=xml as it does if one requests
http://www.google.com/search?q=google+ajax&output=json I'm assuming
some people have access to the xml formatted result set. Can the xml
result set be made public?

Slightly off topic - are there any plans to make AdSense respond to
changes in page content as a result of AJAX?

Manfred

unread,
Dec 15, 2006, 11:36:21 AM12/15/06
to
Jacob wrote:
> Is there any way Google can be convinced to allow access to the result
> set that is sent to the AJAX API without using the API. What I'm asking
> is the response from an AJAX search arrives in the form of a JSON
> formatted result set (I'm assuming - perhaps it's XML formatted). Is it
> possible that Google will allow users to access this JSON information
> directly (hopefully in XML format).
I'm convinced, the answer is NO.

If you look at the Google AJAX Search API Terms of Use
http://code.google.com/apis/ajaxsearch/terms.html
you will see

1.3 Appropriate Conduct and Prohibited Uses.
... You agree that you will not, and you will not permit your users or
other third parties to: (a) modify or replace the text, images, or
other content of the Google Search Results, including by (i) changing
the order in which the Google Search Results appear, (ii) intermixing
Search Results from sources other than Google, or (iii) intermixing
other content such that it appears to be part of the Google Search
Results; ...

This means the concept for the AJAX Search API is _very_ different
from the SOAP Search API, not even similar.

Manfred

softplus

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Dec 16, 2006, 10:31:21 AM12/16/06
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>Can I scrape the search results from the Google AJAX Search API if the API
>doesn't meet my needs?
>
>Sorry, but no; the AJAX Search API is the only permissible way to publish
>Google AJAX Search API results on your site. We'll block your application
>if it accesses search results outside of the API.
from http://code.google.com/apis/ajaxsearch/faq.html#scrape

:-(

ry...@deviantresearch.com

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Dec 19, 2006, 12:24:23 PM12/19/06
to
This really is a shame.

What if queries coming in over SOAP were limited to the domain for
which the key was issued?

That is, implicitly add 'site:...' to the request.

This would seem to side-step a large proportion of mischief while
allowing Google (and myself) to gather some valuable information as to
the search terms of interest to the visitors of a specific site.

Yes?

--Ryan

Manfred

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Dec 19, 2006, 5:24:51 PM12/19/06
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ry...@deviantresearch.com wrote:
> This really is a shame.
>
> What if queries coming in over SOAP were limited to the domain for
> which the key was issued?
The key given to you by Google is not bound by domain but by account
(From Terms and Conditions):
The Google SOAP Search API service is made available to you for
your personal, non-commercial use only (at home or at work).
You may only create a single account and must provide accurate
identification ...

> This would seem to side-step a large proportion of mischief while
> allowing Google (and myself) to gather some valuable information as to
> the search terms of interest to the visitors of a specific site.

I would be rather skeptical to add further restrictions to the API,
most likely this will solve one problem and introduce five others.
To give you an example: the huge demand for keyword
specific ranking information has led to heavy use for the
SOAP API because there is no other legitimate way to
get this information. No surprise, this brought up
demands for more than 1000 queries per day or for
results to mirror the ones from the browser ...

A better solution for this would be to add functionality
to the place where it belongs, the "Google webmaster tools".

Manfred

chovy

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Dec 20, 2006, 3:42:24 AM12/20/06
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Manfred wrote:
> To give you an example: the huge demand for keyword
> specific ranking information has led to heavy use for the
> SOAP API because there is no other legitimate way to
> get this information. No surprise, this brought up
> demands for more than 1000 queries per day or for
> results to mirror the ones from the browser ...
>
> A better solution for this would be to add functionality
> to the place where it belongs, the "Google webmaster tools".
>
> Manfred

This is exactly what I'm using the API key for, and had plans to give
it away for free on my site, supported by Google adsense...

Any way to find out where I rank for searches short of manually
searching?

Manfred

unread,
Dec 20, 2006, 8:52:13 AM12/20/06
to
chovy wrote:
> Manfred wrote:
> > To give you an example: the huge demand for keyword
> > specific ranking information has led to heavy use for the
> > SOAP API because there is no other legitimate way to
> > get this information. No surprise, this brought up
> > demands for more than 1000 queries per day or for
> > results to mirror the ones from the browser ...
> >
> > A better solution for this would be to add functionality
> > to the place where it belongs, the "Google webmaster tools".
> >
> > Manfred
>
> This is exactly what I'm using the API key for, and had plans to give
> it away for free on my site, supported by Google adsense...
Strictly speaking, "free" is not the same as "non-commercial" and
it should be irrelevant who is paying you. On the other hand, it seems
unlikely that Google is going to sue its customer. This question came
up here from time to time but has never been answered conclusively.

> Any way to find out where I rank for searches short of manually
> searching?

As I said, I don't know any other legitimate way yet. A different
but related statistic is available from Webmaster Tools - Query
stats which you most probably already know.

Manfred

ry...@deviantresearch.com

unread,
Dec 20, 2006, 11:19:32 AM12/20/06
to
First, I appreciate the response and even the existence of this
discussion.

> The key given to you by Google is not bound by domain but by account

I had forgotten this, thanks. But a key-domain pair restriction is at
least possible.

> (From Terms and Conditions):
> The Google SOAP Search API service is made available to you for
> your personal, non-commercial use only (at home or at work).

Fair enough. For me, this is implied by the service being in 'beta'
also.

> I would be rather skeptical to add further restrictions to the API,
> most likely this will solve one problem and introduce five others.

Perhaps, or perhaps not. At least existing applications would not
necessarily be affected.

> To give you an example: the huge demand for keyword
> specific ranking information has led to heavy use for the
> SOAP API because there is no other legitimate way to
> get this information. No surprise, this brought up
> demands for more than 1000 queries per day or for
> results to mirror the ones from the browser ...

This is precisely what I would expect to mitigate through a
single-domain limitation.
No data useful to determining page rank would be returned in the
context a 'site:' filter, so you may even have a decrease in these
demands.

I am fairly certain that that a 'site:' limitation represents a
positive middle ground for the future of this service.

Is there downside that I am missing?

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