Did a bit of experimenting with google sitemaps. It left me wondering if the effort was worth it or if it is even counter productive.
This was for a new website. A few days after the site's contents were first upload, the home page was submitted with the standard form. A few days later the home page and only the home page was indexed. The problem of course is that the site does not have enough incoming links yet. So it was decided to try out sitemaps.
The sitemap was generated with the python script (one more reason for me to learn python). Then submitted to the sitemaps feature. So far so good but the next day when I checked the status I find that the sitemap is reported as being missing. Hello?
Found the reason, when synchronizing from the development server to the live server the sitemap file get's deleted (since it only exists on the live server). So the sitemap file was downloaded and a copy was placed in the local server, this time google picked it up with out any problem.
Now the bad news, a search for the site reveals that the home page which had previously been indexed has now been removed! it's place is taken up by a list of url but none of the url have been indexed so they will not show up in a search.