Thanks, that was fun!
Well the time has come for Quotably to bid adieu. Quotably was born over the span of a weekend in what was really a grand experiment. It was the end of March, 2008 and Twitter was all the buzz in "Web 2.0" circles. I watched with great interest as it seemed just about every third post on TechCrunch was some new Twitter tool. I was intrigued by just what conversations were shifting into this new space and frustrated by how difficult they were to follow. Threading seemed like to obvious solution and I set out to scratch the itch.
Many others seemed to agree, and I can't deny it was quite fun to see my little weekend project ramp up from zero to a couple hundred thousand visitors as it made it onto a number of large news sites within hours of launching. The traffic continued to hold up and I scrambled to keep the site online.
This was all around the time that Twitter began offering their "Fire Hose" feed over XMPP. Originally Quotably was built not to rely on it and instead repeatedly hit the public_timeline.xml feed. This of course is far from ideal since it made it impossible to actually capture all public Tweets, but at Twitter's usage volume at the time, it worked well enough. Once Quotably started using the XMPP feed (about a week after launch), however, it was able to keep up with the growth of Twitter. Unfortunately, Twitter shut down the XMPP "Fire Hose" a few months later for all but a couple favorite 3rd parties of which Quotably was not one. I don't begrudge them for doing this. From a business perspective I'd argue it wasn't in their best interest to share this data in the first place as it gave a leg up to lots of potential competition.
Without a reliable means to make Quotably work well I began losing interest. The site has hobbled along without much intervention and I've decided it's time to put it out of its misery. To the folks that are still using quotably on a daily basis: I hope you'll forgive me. Quotably will in time likely be reborn with a new focus.