Yahoo's BOSS, an API that gives developers open access to Yahoo's search infrastructure, will soon be offered as a premium service. Today, Yahoo announced some new features that may be a move toward justifying BOSS's fee-based structure, including the ability to search tags for bookmarks on Delicious, the popular social bookmarking site acquired by Yahoo in 2005.
Yahoo's Search Blog describes the scope of BOSS's Delicious integration:
The immense popularity of Delicious has driven a wave of Delicious tools from Yahoo! and the Delicious community, such as browser add-ons, APIs, and Search Monkey applications. The Delicious data available today through BOSS includes Delicious saves, top tags, and count information.
The blog post goes on to describe how to integrate Delicious results using BOSS's RESTful interface:
To obtain this data, use view=delicious_toptags or delicious_saves in the BOSS Web Search call. For example, the following code shows the number of times a search results has been saved in Delicious, its top tags (science, biology, and education), and the count for each tag.<delicious_saves>12</delicious_saves> <delicious_toptags> <tags> <tag> <name>science</name> <count>6</count> </tag> <tag> <name>biology</name> <count>5</count> </tag> <tag> <name>education</name> <count>3</count> </tag> </tags> </delicious_toptags>
Other updates to BOSS include greater ability for users to strictly filter search results by language, and the additions of Czech, Hungarian, and traditional Chinese. BOSS News search results can now be filtered by date. Despite these recent updates, some feel that Yahoo! has taken too much time releasing new APIs for accessing Delicious bookmarks. ReadWriteWeb's Marshall Kirkpatrick writes:
If knowledge and information are value then Yahoo has taken a small pipe connected to a potentially huge reservoir of black gold and let it just run down the drain unused for the last three years... It would be great if Delicious saw continued development in directions that supported this data-centric approach of leveraging crowdsourced attention signals. We're not sure how much hope for that is warranted though, given that so little progress has been made in that direction so far.
This update to BOSS is an incremental next step in Yahoo's platform strategy. With 34 Yahoo APIs to choose from and 800+ Yahoo-based mashups, many of the most popular APIs in our directory come from Yahoo including del.icio.us, Flickr and Yahoo Maps.