Thursday, February 15, 2007

Dapper - a tool for extracting website data

Jacob Reider used Dapper in a PBX/CallerID applet he built. New to me, so I visited the URL he provided. It looks like a productized version of the tools people build to do mash-ups. It probably creates a DOM-like model of a web page and then provides an API to manipulate that data. Here's an excerpt from the FAQ:
Dapper: Frequently Asked Questions

What is Dapper?

Dapper is a service that allows you to extract and use information from any website on the Internet. For those familiar with web services, you can think of Dapper as an API maker. For the rest of you, Dapper allows you to build web applications and mashups using data from any website without any programming.

What is a Dapp?

You can think of a Dapp as a "black box" which represents a specific type of page on a specific website on the Internet. The Dapp provides access to the content of that specific website in XML. This XML can then be used in any way you like, including in your next application. Furthermore, Dapper provides a set of tools to transform this XML into other formats, including RSS, email, and Google Maps...
If I get a chance, I may see if I can use it to create an RSS feed for Dyer's archaic web site.

No comments: