Not Dead Yet: Yahoo's Term Extraction API Lives to Fight Another Day

Andres Ferrate
Aug. 18 2009, 08:28PM EDT

Late last week we reported on Yahoo's decision to shut down two of its APIs: the Term Extraction and the Contextual Web Search services (our profiles: Yahoo Term Extraction API and Yahoo Search API). But in response to outcry from the developer community since that announcement, it looks like Yahoo will be keeping the Term Extraction alive.

Although the prospects for the Contextual Web Search API are unclear, Chris Yeh, Head of the Yahoo Developer Network, has announced that Yahoo has reversed course and will not be shutting down its Term Extraction API.

According to Chris, who posted the news on the Yahoo! Developer Network Blog:

Last week, we announced the imminent shutdown of our Term Extraction Service on August 31. Since then, many of you have told us how important this service is to you. Because most developers access the Term Extraction Service through YQL and Pipes, some have asked whether these products are also in jeopardy. They are not! And, frankly, our timing was unfortunate because we announced this closure just after, well, you know.

OK, we heard you. You’ve made it clear to us that shutting down the Term Extraction Service would be a mistake. So, we’ve changed our plans. We're leaving the service up and running indefinitely.

The interesting tidbit included in the news is that Yahoo has indicated that it will not be shutting down YQL (our YQL Profile) or Yahoo Pipes. So it looks like (at least for now) developers who have come to rely on these two resources for their mashups will be able to rely on them for the foreseeable future.

As we mentioned in our earlier post on the topic, the Term Extraction API is very popular among developers with 33 mashups that use this API listed on our API directory. Stay tuned as we gather additional news on the fate of Yahoo's other APIs.

Andres Ferrate

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elliot

AlchemyAPI's term extractor offers a good transition mechanism for those who do not desire to utilize the Y! Term Extract service in the long term.

AlchemyAPI offers some pretty neat capabilities not found in Yahoo's API: support for 8 languages, higher API limits, entity extraction, etc.