Be prepared for popularity

I was thinking about who I would follow to see what’s going on at Macworld 2008 in San Francisco as the world awaits The Word from Steve on what Apple will be delivering.

Maybe what’s in his leaked keynote address, or not. That will be known imminently.

So very unfortunate timing to see, at 5:20pm, that Twitter has crashed. Jaiku is throwing up occasional ‘504 Gateway Timeout’ errors but largely the service is up.

I thought I’d take a look at the Macworld website to see what’s happening there – and got this screen:


Whoops! ‘Too many connections’ to the database, it says. Can’t handle the volume.

I wrote yesterday about CoverItLive, a new live blogging service that would be a terrific tool for live coverage of an event like Macworld.

Yet CoverItLive has crashed, too:


Looks like everywhere is having trouble.

Engadget was my next port of call, but I see this:


Note the text at bottom left of the screenshot.

Finally, a working site – Duncan Riley live blogging at TechCrunch:


Methinks many people caught on the hop.

[Later] What some of the sites had to say:

  • Twitter blog: Twitter is currently experiencing some slowness related to the massive number of updates around Steve Job’s keynote at MacWorld. We’re working on it and will keep you updated!
  • Engadget: Today, unfortunately, we did see some issues — we’re hosted by AOL, which obviously has more bandwidth than God, and yet still two data centers went out. Of course, there are far more data centers hosting us than just two, so a lot of readers saw no issues whatsoever. We are already in the midst of a post-mortem, but it’s pretty clear you all must really love what we’ve got going on here, because this was easily our most trafficked live coverage to date.
  • CrunchGear: On behalf of the CG crew, we apologize for the mix-ups during the keynote. Keynotes are hard to cover and we experienced a perfect storm of site failures, database errors, and “No, you can’t stream live audio” directly from folks at Apple, all in the matter of two minutes.

Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

  1. Kevin


    It’ll be interesting to see what gets more press following Macworld…the new Apple stuff or the failure of services like Twitter!

    I have been following on Techcrunch, but I actually thing Gizmodo is better. More photos, faster updates, etc.


  2. David Phillips

    Being off line these days means being cut off from the world and then some.
    It damages the reputation of the organisation.

    This, then, is an issue for the corporate affairs director and puts web performance into the lap of PR (CIPR please note).

    Being off line smacks of, as Gordon Brown might say, ‘incompetence’.

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