It all began in 2010 when a friend of mine got sick and could not write a paper for a university course. Well, hiring a ghost writer solved the problem but the paper we got seemed suspicious. We looked for plagiarism detection tools that would respect privacy but could not find any. So I wrote a little tool that used google to analyze the paper in three nights. It found that almost half of the text consisted of direct copies from the internet.
With this "early success" I decided to work on the app prototype and make it available to the public. It went through many iterations until I finished the first version in February 2011 and released it on sucodo.de.
A lot of feedback from friends and users went into the design and usability to build a great experience. I am very thankful for this invaluable help.
June 2010: The first prototype is finished. It uses Google as search engine, looks ugly but produces good results.
January 2011: First alpha release of sucodo. Unfortunately, Google changed its terms&conditions, which were (and are) too strict anyways. I switched over to using Microsoft bing.
May 2011: All features I had in mind for the first version of sucodo done. Moving to beta-stage!
June 2012: bing changed its API. I updated sucodo to make it work again. Microsoft annoucend that free usage of bing will be very limited in the future. Too limited to be of use for me.
July 2012: blekko is the new search engine used by sucodo. It works better than bing and is free. By this month, more than 10,000 texts have been analyzed with sucodo.
June 2013: I released the first official version today called "Aardvark". As many other projects, I will use animal names instead of version numbers. The release is a bugfix release. You can have a look at the changes on github. With this release I started tracking how often same phrases are used. MD5-hashes of all search queries are stored. This is an temporary measure to determine if developing a caching algorithm makes sense to increase performance.
March 2014: As the user numbers climb, blekko decided that the free tier usage I got from them was too much now. They cancelled their most generous offer so I cannot offer sucodo as free web service anymore. Users check around 200 texts (which are about 120 000 words) every day. This is a lot and would costs hundreds of dollars every month with any other service. So, I say thanks for the great service I got from blekko.
May 2015: sucodo is back with Google again. The new version is called "Baboon".
August 2015: sucodo got a technical update for its website. The tool can now be run directly in the browser again, in a local context to protect privacy. Sucodo can still be downloaded, if necessary. English and German language versions are now distributed over two domains, instead of using a query parameter.
May 2016: sucodo does not work anymore because Google switched off the Web Search API.