World Bulletin / News Desk
A data center glitch brought down Twitter for roughly 2 hours on Thursday, as the micro-blogging service suffered its second widespread outage in 5 weeks and another blow to its reputation and reliability.
"I wish I could say that today's outage could be explained by the Olympics or even a cascading bug," said vice president of engineering Mazen Rawashdeh in a blog post after service resumed. "Instead, it was due to this infrastructural double-whammy. We are investing aggressively in our systems to avoid this situation in the future."
On Thursday, users trying to log on to its website were greeted only by an incomplete error message: "Twitter is currently down for. We expect to be back in."
Twitter - infamous for its "fail whale" outage icon in its early years showing a whale held up by a flock of birds - last went dark for several hours on June 21.
The June episode revived fears that stability issues may once again be plaguing Twitter, which claims to have significantly improved its infrastructure. The company blamed that incident on a "cascading bug".
Founded in 2006, Twitter's phenomenal growth means it has struggled to handle the ever-rising volume of tweets. But in recent years, it has devoted considerable resources toward improving reliability in a move to project itself as a mature, polished brand.
Chief Executive Dick Costolo, who has focused on improving the service's profitability and attracting advertisers, said last month that Twitter has 140 million active monthly users who send 400 million tweets daily.
Google Inc's online messaging and voice-calls service - Google Talk - also went down for hours on Thursday in what appeared to be a separate outage. The issue should have been resolved as of mid-morning, according to the company's status update page.
Japan posted a current account deficit of 1.58 trillion yen (US$15 billion) for January.
The Asia-Pacific would be left with more than half a billion chronically hungry people even if the region meets its millennium development goal
The Visegrad 4 group including Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovakia is looking to diversify supplies
Nick Letchford, managing director of the group that owns the Old Shoreditch Station cafe, decided to install the machine after noticing the popularity of bitcoins among his customers working nearby in the digital industries.
Varying degrees of drought are hitting almost two thirds of the limited arable land across Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, the Palestinian territories and Iraq.
Turkey deems Iranian gas too expensive compared with other suppliers like Russia and Azerbaijan, an assertion rejected by Tehran.
Satoshi Nakamoto, a name known to legions of bitcoin traders, practitioners and boosters around the world, appeared to lose his anonymity on Thursday after Newsweek published a story that said he lived in Temple City, California, just east of Los Angeles.
BP's exploration and production sharing agreement with Libya covers onshore acreage in Ghadames, near the border between Libya, Algeria and Tunisia, and offshore acreage in the central Sirte basin
There are discussions at high levels within the U.S. government on how to use U.S. natural gas resources
The judicial sources said on Thursday that prosecutors suspected the companies of working together on campaigns to favour Lucentis, including promoting it to local doctors
Scotland's Energy Minister Fergus Ewing offered to meet Shell to discuss the future of the oil and gas industry if Scotland votes to end its 307-year tie with England
European Commission President said that from a purely financial standpoint the crisis in Ukraine should not have much impact on the euro zone but there was potential for far greater instability
The rouble-traded MICEX lost 1.9 percent on the news to trade at 1,322.2 points. It had earlier traded in positive territory.
If tensions eventually escalate into economic sanctions, the single biggest point of vulnerability for the Gulf would probably be the Dolphin Energy pipeline carrying about 2 billion cubic feet of gas per day from Qatar to the UAE and Oman
The former Soviet republic is strategically important to Moscow as the main gas transit route to the European Union, Russia's biggest customer
Iran will soon receive a second installment of previously frozen assets which are being returned to it under an interim nuclear agreement with world powers