From today, Twitter’s search engine will index roughly half a trillion tweets. It promises it will serve up queries with an average latency of under 100ms. The move means historic tweets will now be accessible to everyone through Twitter’s public search.
Previously, the complete index was only accessible to certain partners.
The news of the now publicly accessible archive was first made earlier today on Twitter’s engineering blog.
This new infrastructure enables many use cases, providing comprehensive results for entire TV and sports seasons, conferences (#TEDGlobal), industry discussions (#MobilePayments), places, businesses and long-lived hashtag conversations across topics, such as #JapanEarthquake, #Election2012, #ScotlandDecides, #HongKong, #Ferguson and many more. This change will be rolling out to users over the next few days.
The post includes a lot of technical details how the index was built and implemented.
Finally, this is a good time to remind you of Twitter’s search operators that might help with finding what you’re looking for in a timely manner. Either use the advanced search box or learn the syntax itself. It’s listed here with examples.