[sf-perl] website searching/filtering script

Dan Lyke danlyke at flutterby.com
Wed Sep 12 16:15:12 PDT 2007

On Wed, 12 Sep 2007 16:01:47 -0700
merlyn at stonehenge.com (Randal L. Schwartz) wrote:
> If it's that legitimate, get the info directly from the website owner
> then.

I can't speak to Henry's application, however...

Although I run screaming from "give us your name and password"
applications, Blogger is the first one that comes to mind, I could
easily see a useful service that would be extracting this information
from so-called "social networking" sites like MySpace and FaceBook and
transferring it to other places. And neither of those companies is
going to make extracting the user's data easy. There's a legit
application that involves scraping names.

Similarly, I've been in business environments where a group had
legitimate access to data, but for whatever reason a computer systems
vendor or the IS/IT department didn't want to assist in interfacing.

Back before the web I built a dummy printer for a hospital maintenance
department that wanted to take work orders coming out of main hospital
computer services group and put them in their own database, because
there were queries and tracking situations that the main system didn't
handle, and I set up something that sat between a Paradox application
and the main computer system at a large manufacturing firm that looked
to the IT department like a VT-100 terminal, because they refused to
let another group at the database any other way.

There are lots of good reasons to write scrapers and bots, not all of
them are nefarious.


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