May 20, 2011 at 4:25 PM ET
After scanning and saving reams of microfilm and yards of newsprint for five years, Google has decided to shelve its newspaper archiving project. The Google News Archive invited newspapers to send along back issues, and scanned and indexed them so that they could be searched on the Web.
But in an email yesterday, Google told the Boston Phoenix, one of the project participants, that it would abandoning the archive of 2,000 publications. Instead, it will focus its attention on other projects like the Google One Pass, a system that helps publishers to sell content from their websites.
So far, Google has uploaded and indexed 60 million pages of news, spanning the past 250 years, the Phoenix reported Thursday. Also, the search giant apparently used Google Maps technology to decipher the funky fonts of old newspapers.
As the Technologizer notes, the news archive is kind of clunky, and quite hard to find among Google's tabs, so a lack of viewers may be one reason the company decided to abandon the ancient archive exercise.
If you have yet to visit the site, and were wondering what was making headlines 200 years ago today, don't worry; the existing archives will remain up and stay searchable.
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