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Author Topic: I stopped using WebSiteWatcher and started using OpenKapow  (Read 8110 times)
ppass
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« on: May 28, 2007, 07:56:09 PM »

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I had used WebSite Watcher for more than a year and started to run into limitations. Especially, I do not like the fact that even if just 1 word changes, the whole paragraph gets highlighted. RSS reading features are obviously below the standard of most RSS readers out there.

So I switched to the following software:

- RSSBandit as a RSS reader (excellent!)

- Openkapow RoboMaker to extract changing data in a web page

Openkapow Robomaker generates a RSS feed of changes by monitoring a web page. It is even possible to monitor several pages at once. It is a very powerful software. The downside is that much more manual work is necessary compared to WebSite Watcher, but the result is outstanding.

Oh, by the way, those 2 software are 100% free!
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Darwin
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« Reply #1 on: May 28, 2007, 08:14:22 PM »

Quote
I do not like the fact that even if just 1 word changes, the whole paragraph gets highlighted

I've never used Website Watcher, but is it not possible to change this behaviour via an optional setting?  I ask because I use Check&Get 3 (love it) and when a word changes, only the changed word is highlighted. Website Watcher is one of the most respected apps in this category (and won an award in an early Donationcoder review), so I'd be surprised if it was this ham fisted in its approach to this...

Just my  two cents
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Darwin
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« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2007, 08:17:40 PM »

PS Website Watcher's developer is quite active here and is very approachable - perhaps you should/could raise this issue with him?
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mouser
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« Reply #3 on: May 29, 2007, 01:26:15 AM »

Openkapow RoboMaker looks very interesting: http://openkapow.com/Default.aspx

ps. RSS Bandit: http://www.rssbandit.org
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kiwi2b
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« Reply #4 on: May 29, 2007, 03:43:37 AM »

Sure does look interesting, but does anybody (Veign?) know the rough legal situation for this type of idea? I checked with my legal guy (in New Zealand) and it isn't possible to do what Openkapow RoboMaker seems to be suggesting: scrape and republish information from a website without permission.
I guess you could go ahead anyway, but unless you are a Google with deep pockets, be careful if the source of your information isn't happy with what you are doing...
Any thoughts guys?
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ppass
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« Reply #5 on: May 29, 2007, 06:12:42 AM »

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In WebSite Watcher, this has been discussed extensively in the past.
http://www.aignes.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=780
Last comment was "But an optional word-by-word comparison is planned for a higher version." but the developper seems concerned with performance. To my knowledge, this still remains to be implemented. WebSite Watcher may be "one of the most respected apps in this category", it still does not perfom word-to-word comparison, unlike other software.

Anyway, the main reason that made me switch is the below-par RSS reading feature.


Concerning the legal situation of html scrapping done by Openkapow, I guess that it depends what you do with it. If you scrap protected content, publish it, and  make it widely available, without the consent of the content owner, you may run into trouble. But if you use it for your own purpose only and keep the URL generated by Openkapow for yourself, then I don't see any reason why it should not be OK.


Furthermore, you should not publish passwords inside Openkapow robots. Logins / passwords must be passed as arguments when calling the url, so accessing a password - protected database still requires to know the passwords - therefore I do not see any legal problem. This is just a tool.

You may have a look at Openkapow forums where this question should be discussed.

Although the big talk of the moment is APIs and mashups, I bet that web scrapping / html scrapping is the next big thing. This is my 1 cent!
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Darwin
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« Reply #6 on: May 29, 2007, 06:41:40 AM »

Quote
Last comment was "But an optional word-by-word comparison is planned for a higher version." but the developper seems concerned with performance. To my knowledge, this still remains to be implemented. WebSite Watcher may be "one of the most respected apps in this category", it still does not perfom word-to-word comparison, unlike other software.

Interesting. I guess I've come to take this for granted with Check&Get!
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timns
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« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2010, 09:56:20 PM »

I grabbed a copy of Website Watcher a couple of weeks ago, and I really think I must be missing something.

I seem to have ended up with a tabbed browser in which only the leftmost tab gets used, and a fiddly interface for setting up some monitoring options.  huh
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