A short post on the Google News blog today revealed a big number: Google recently quadrupled the number of newspaper articles in its News Archive Search. You may recall that at TechCrunch50 last year, Google’s Marissa Mayer demoed this powerful news tool that can search the text of publications far back in time — some over 200 years old.
The recent update saw Google add a bunch of new publications, including some from different parts of the world. And it even has a newspaper in the archives from 1753 now. The fact that it’s searchable is fairly insane.
Google launched with “millions” of searchable articles, so now we have to assume it has millions times four (Google didn’t give an exact number). But this along with its book scanning efforts are getting impressive in their size and scope (but the book scanning is not without controversy).
Of course, why Google primarily cares about archiving these old publications is not just for information, but also for the fact that it can sell contextual AdSense ads against them. Look at this article from the Manila Standard about a volcano eruption, it features an ad to get an emergency management degree.