Jaiku Invites, a Jaiku fan site, posts on what appears to be Jaiku's move from their own infrastructure to that of Google. Here's the quote...
For those of you not familiar with trace routes the last few lines there show that the domain Jaiku.com is now on the google network. The IP address that it finishes at is also one belonging to several blocks used by GAE [Google App Engine]. Up until this, Jaiku.com had remained on the same Finnish server it was on when google bought it, trying to survive on just 1GB of RAM.
For those who aren't familiar with the name Jaiku was a microblogging service that competed with Twitter, Pownce, etc... In October of 2007 they were acquired by Google and essentially shut down (existing users could still use it but they stopped taking any new signups).
That was all we heard from Jaiku for a long, long time.
I'll be honest, this post is less about Jaiku and more about Google's business strategy in general. You see there are a few factors that are unique to Jaiku that make a very important point about how Google is being run internally. Those are...
1. Microblogging was an emerging business with a lot of attention when Google bought Jaiku.
2. Microblogging is not that hard a programming task. Any modifications Google would have needed to make to Jaiku should have been fairly easy to do.
3. Jaiku was already written in Python (the native language of Google App Engine). The framework it was written in was not Google's preferred one (GAE uses Django, Jaiku uses Twisted) but the fact that it was already written in Python should have sped the process along a little.
4. Jaiku had an urgent need for more resources. As Jaiku invites puts it...
Jaiku.com had remained on the same Finnish server it was on when google bought it, trying to survive on just 1GB of RAM.
So all in all it was in Google's best interest to get Jaiku up and running as quickly as possible and the task couldn't have been much easier. Yet it still took Google 11 months just to move it over to their servers.
I think this proves that Google's propensity for burying the companies they acquire is not a technical problem (though I'm sure that contributes) but one of poor management. Because this was about as easy a technical task as they could have gotten and they still fumbled the ball.
Google is backing itself into a very uncomfortable corner right now. They can't seem to grow organically yet they also can't seem capitalize on companies they acquire. The problem is being hidden right now by their massive search revenues but once that stops impressing Wall Street people are going to start looking real hard at Google's (apparently flawed) business practices. I'd hope for their sake that these problems are fixed by then.