GU.LY

I used TINYURL as my URL shortener of choice until I found TR.IM. TRIM lasted quite a while and then out of nowhere, it shut down. About a year later it came back, but I had already moved on to BIT.LY. Eventually, BITLY turned into a bloated product with a horrible UI/UX, abandoning the value of simple, easy-to-use web functionality. I didn’t want to put my short links at the mercy of yet another service I so I decided to write my own. I was fortunate enough to have purchased a 2-character Lybian domain before the registry restricted purchases of names with fewer than 4 character to Lybian citizens, and thus, GU.LY was born.

GULY (http://gu.ly) is my home rolled version of a URL shortener. No doubt there are more active, public URL shorteners than you can shake a stick at and this one, in a lot of ways, is no different.┬áIt works on the same premise as all URL shorteners by responding with a “Location” + redirect URL header and an HTTP status of “301 Moved”. I don’t make any money from it and don’t advertise it, but I and several friends do use it.

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Today, URL shorteners are about the most blase of Internet functionality there is. Most major websites and moderately popular Internet applications have short URL functionality built-in. Even when they don’t, web programmers generally take URL length into consideration when designing applications. That’s good. It was a problem that needed solving.

No one talks about URL shorteners anymore but I like having my own little product — simple, easy, fast, bloat-free — with an impossibly short domain name.

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