ur.ly – Dang Short Urls Powered by Google App Engine

Google App Engine let’s you build web apps that run on Google’s infrastructure. What’s the best way to get familiar with a new framework like this? Build something — preferably something simple and useful, and that’s what I set out to do.

I’ve played around in the URL-shortening space pioneered by TinyURL and understand the problem domain well. I’ve built a couple of these in PHP and Ruby (merb) and registered the ur.ly domain in September 2007 but never released anything. When GAE launched, memories of Steve Rubel’s Could a Billion TinyURL’s Go 404? post (hat tip to Dave Winer) echoed in my brain. Why not build a URL-shortener on GAE and let Google worry about scalability?

So I built ur.ly, a simple, super-scalable (thanks GAE), fast (yeah memcached) URL-shortening application. There’s an API to make it easy to use and it’s open source so you can play with the code or run your own.

Feedback anyone?

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13 thoughts on “ur.ly – Dang Short Urls Powered by Google App Engine

  1. Adam,
    Nice. I couldn’t access the source code but it’s a great idea to put this on GAE. I tried it and got a ur.ly/t address. I feel so special being the 20th address to use it.

  2. Nice work – intend to use it with mymapsmobile project
    One issue though – can’t parse JSON API response, it’s missing a ” character. I’ve raised the defect, hope you’ll get a chance to fix it soon

    Dean

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  4. Chaz6 – at this point urly can’t make short URLs with unicode chars because we’re base62 encoding integers to act as our unique ids.

  5. Bart – no idea on the IP addresses… perhaps a blog post, or perhaps Google had them documented a while back and only supports CNAMEs going forward. Sorry I don’t have a better answer for you.

    Adam

  6. Pingback: wiibart.com » Blog Archive » I just comment on Google Issue 777 - Officially Support Naked Domains for GAE Apps - it’s insane that Google is ignoring this - bart burkhardt

  7. Adam, how did you do the ur.ly have a “naked domain” through Google Apps and Appengine?
    I think Google Apps doesn’t support this feature anymore right?

    Thanks!

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