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Author Topic: Website Change Monitoring Review/Award - WebsiteWatcher  (Read 14961 times)
mouser
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« on: April 09, 2005, 10:57:13 PM »

The DonationCoder.com WebsiteWatcher Review can be found here:

http://www.donationcoder....ve/WebWatchers/index.html

share your thoughts about why you agree or disagree with our review.. if you disagree, tell us about what program you think should have won.  note: this post is locked - please put comments in new threads.
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Scott
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« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2005, 01:02:29 AM »

I've been using WSW for quite awhile, and it has saved tons of time.  I love it when I ask someone (such as a developer) about a new version they've posted, and they ask me, "How did you find out about it so quickly?"

The one thing that drives me nuts about WSW is the fact that if you monitor for certain text in a web page, you'll not only get a change alert when the text is added, but also if that text disappears from the page.  Martin has already told me that he plans on making it possible to filter out this kind of change detection in a future version.
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« Next Edit: Tomorrow at 12:13:47 AM by Scott »
mouser
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« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2005, 01:07:58 AM »

yeah its quite fun that people can't sneak anything by you when you use wsw.

i read a lot of political blogs and i love seeing little sneaky silent changes, like when someone adds or changes one sentence in a long article.
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dcm
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« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2005, 09:47:25 PM »

A free program which I use is Outposted from Xequte Software,
available as http://www.dijialbum.com/download/outpostd.exe

They describe it as follows:

We all have a list of web sites that are important to us; sites for the software we use, news sites, blogs, etc.  While some of these sites change frequently, others remain static for weeks at a time.  Visiting all of these sites just to see what's new would take ages, so OutPosted does all of the work for you.  Give OutPosted a list of your favorite sites and whenever changes are detected the site is e-mailed to you.  Unlike similar software, OutPosted does not send a link to the site, or a lame "Notification of Change" message, but the actual web page, fully formatted, as an email message!             
  Usage and distribution is totally free. 

It works for me!
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masu
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« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2006, 03:37:50 AM »

Hello,

I fully agree with your review. I use Website Watcher for some years and the program gets better and better. Even the beta versions are very stable for productive use.
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moerl
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« Reply #5 on: March 02, 2006, 04:34:50 PM »

Two recent entries and one apparently older one at Lifehacker.com reminded me of this review.. just thought I'd mention that. Perhaps the review is in need of an update? smiley

They are InfoIC, FeedWhip and DeltaSpy.

Oh wow.. nevermind the "a little older entry" remark.. the one I thought was older is actually the very latest entry on Lifehacker.com! It's the last link I posted.

EDIT:
I'm particularly interested in DeltaSpy. Does anyone know about it or have any experience with it? I have nothing against Website Watcher, but I get completely lost in its preferences. They are terrible. A solid 30% of it, if not more, makes plain NO SENSE to me. They are up there on my list of programs with incomprehensible preference dialogs. Directory Opus still takes the cake in the department, but Website Watcher is up there. In contrast, DeltaSpy looks fresh and new and might just do the trick for me. I'll have to try it out.
« Last Edit: March 02, 2006, 04:39:38 PM by moerl » Logged
superboyac
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« Reply #6 on: March 02, 2006, 04:54:58 PM »

Quote
They are up there on my list of programs with incomprehensible preference dialogs. Directory Opus still takes the cake in the department,

Really?!  I don't think DOpus is that difficult to understand, but it is A LOT of preferences.  Maybe that's what makes it so confusing, just the sheer number of things to tweak.  But that's also what makes it so customizable and powerful.  I haven't used Website Watcher that much, but I do remember it's preferences kind of overwhelming me.
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moerl
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« Reply #7 on: March 02, 2006, 05:05:52 PM »

I got my head around DOpus after a while.. but a bunch of things annoyed me about it, so after a while I ditched it in favor of xplorer2, which I'm very happy with. I just wish I could find a way to use it as the default explorer method, but then that maybe isn't the smartest thing either smiley. It's good the way it is, I suppose.
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mouser
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« Reply #8 on: March 02, 2006, 05:09:12 PM »

i agree with both comments about dir opus and wsw options - they are overwhelming.  not sure if that can be fixed though.
the main thing is that in both cases you can just ignore them and use the programs without worrying about them.
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superboyac
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« Reply #9 on: March 02, 2006, 05:18:10 PM »

I got my head around DOpus after a while.. but a bunch of things annoyed me about it, so after a while I ditched it in favor of xplorer2, which I'm very happy with. I just wish I could find a way to use it as the default explorer method, but then that maybe isn't the smartest thing either smiley. It's good the way it is, I suppose.

Wow, moerl, you went to xplorer2 from Dopus?  Xplorer2 is pretty nice, but it doesn't hold a candle to Dopus.  I'm going to try to convert you back! Grin Seriously though, if you do want to go back to DOpus, I'll be more than happy to help.  I might even be able to send you a setup file that you can import and automatically have everything set the way you like.  If you ever were a fan of Total Commander, I even have a layout for DOpus that imitates the TC look and functionality.
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moerl
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« Reply #10 on: March 02, 2006, 05:24:00 PM »

Well.. I like xplorer2 because it's LITE and is very powerful for its size. Many commands can be used directly through the address bar, and it's got a lot of hidden options as well. I do have a license for DOpus though. I'd have to check if it's still valid smiley. I might give it another shot, who knows. I'll find out about my license and post back when I do.

And mouser, that's right. You can keep using the programs without worrying about preferences, but you see, I'm the type of user that likes to know what's UNDER THE HOOD. As such, I hate software where I don't even understand what the hell I'm looking at in the preferences, or where I don't even udnerstand the certain options do. In certain software that has more features than I need or use, that is acceptable, and such may be the case with DOpus. But in WSW I'd like to know what it all is :/

It doesn't even necessarily have to be changed, although that would be ideal. The Foobar guys, for instance, got their act together with 0.9RC and cleaned up the preferences. I always disliked Foobar before, but when my beta QMP died on me lately, I gave the Foo another shot, not having known it was updated recently, and found myself really liking it with the new preferences. This issue, then, is so important to me that it can make the difference between love and hate for a program!

One very easy way to fix bloated preferences dialogs is to add tool tip explanations of the different functions, or help buttons, or, the best way to do it: an area of the preferences window where infos just show up as you mouse over everything. It's a fairly easy fix and does the trick as it informs the user about what's up, even if the preferences are bloated and shitty.
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mouser
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« Reply #11 on: March 02, 2006, 05:26:37 PM »

getting back on topic - i think we should update the website change review, some new programs have come to light since the review.  if anyone wants to write their impressions of the new programs it might be a nice start.
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taichimaster
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« Reply #12 on: March 02, 2006, 05:47:17 PM »

Quote
the main thing is that in both cases you can just ignore them and use the programs without worrying about them

Although I agree with that, it's not necessary the case all the time.  See the following quote from Joel,

Quote
Even if you think your new feature is all good and can't hurt because "people who don't care can just ignore it," you're forgetting that the people who allegedly don't care are still forced to look at your feature and figure out if they need it.

"How could a mute button on a sound system hurt?" After all, if you don't want to waste time learning about the mute button, you can just ignore it completely, right?

No. Because at some point, someone will hit it by mistake, and no sound will come out of the speakers, and if they don't know about "mute," they'll start trying to turn up the volume knob all the way, so when they do finally unmute the thing, the speakers will blow out with an ear-shattering boom that creates permanent, concave warps in each of the walls of the room where the sound system was installed (and a matching hump in the floor of the apartment upstairs).

The entire article could be read here http://www.joelonsoftware.com/design/1stDraft/01.html

I don't think there are too many preferences in WSW though, it's an absolute wonderful piece of software and worth every single penny of it (esp. with the discount)!!!
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mouser
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« Reply #13 on: March 02, 2006, 06:14:29 PM »

let me say that i completely agree that too many options can hurt - they make it harder to find the options you really need and care about.

i think in the future we will probably eventually move to a standardized options control interface, and perhaps with some way of switching betten a simple main view and full view, etc.
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Chris
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« Reply #14 on: March 05, 2006, 03:10:40 AM »

To see an overview  on Web Page Change Detection Services see http://staff.philau.edu/BellS/keepup/detectit.htm.

While I PC based programs may work well, I like the Web based services. They can check sites every day and email the results. Hence the results can be received any where through webmail and your PC does not need to be going. I personally like Watch That Page http://www.watchthatpage.com. It is a free service for normal use and is very good, but does not have all the features of some of the others.

My ideal would be to a have my own server based program, (written in PHP) andrunning on my own server. It could have the features of the PC programs and I would have full control of the program.

Chris
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mrainey
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« Reply #15 on: October 27, 2006, 10:15:38 AM »

Quote
I'm particularly interested in DeltaSpy. Does anyone know about it or have any experience with it? I have nothing against Website Watcher, but I get completely lost in its preferences. They are terrible. A solid 30% of it, if not more, makes plain NO SENSE to me. They are up there on my list of programs with incomprehensible preference dialogs. Directory Opus still takes the cake in the department, but Website Watcher is up there. In contrast, DeltaSpy looks fresh and new and might just do the trick for me. I'll have to try it out.


This program (now called Update Patrol) is discounted today only from $49.95 to $15.00.

http://bitsdujour.com/

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Software For Metalworking
http://closetolerancesoftware.com
vegas
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« Reply #16 on: October 27, 2006, 06:52:15 PM »

WOW! Nice find, Invaluable Software. Just giving this a bump so people don't miss it, only 5hours and minutes left to get in for $15.00!!

I would also like to thank DCoder & Martin again for the copy I won many months ago.  Good job with flexibly promoting your product, better than most others out there.
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wilsonch
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« Reply #17 on: May 04, 2011, 09:42:18 AM »

I have one web site I would like to monitor for text (main body) changes. It is a simple site. I would like the monitoring service or program to notify me via SMS, email, or Twitter when the page changes, which it does at most once daily. The programs above are either overkill and expensive, or the links no longer work, or the SMTP setup doesn't include SSL (which is now necessary to send email via Yahoo or gmail), and so on. I am now using page2rss but that service seems to include a delay of up to 24 hours. I would like near real-time notification -- it's not stock derivatives, but it is news.

Anyhow, any revised or new recommendations?
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« Reply #18 on: June 21, 2011, 06:58:24 AM »

Our new tool Informant is now available. It's web based and simple to use but can also manage advanced tasks. We're continuously developing this tool.

* Monitor changes on any web page.
* No sign-up or registering.
* Predefined social media monitoring:
   - Facebook
   - Twitter
   - Blogs
   - Google Search
* Results in various formats:
   - RSS
   - Atom
   - Email
   - SMS
* Complex filters through multiple regexes.
* Handles negative filters.
* Highlight on matching filter words.
* No limit on amount of sources.
* Variable delivery frequency.
* Handles HTML, RSS, ATOM, JSON and PDF.
* Modest pricing and easy payment through PayPal.
* Invoice payment available on request.
* Enterprise solutions available, please contact us.

Hope anyone of you can find this useful! If anyone feels like evaluating it, please PM me on this forum with your created subscription and I'll give you an additional 100 free credits (1 hit = 1 credit).

Best regards,
Stefan / Intelliwell AB
« Last Edit: June 21, 2011, 07:39:22 AM by intelliwell » Logged
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