24/02/2008

New Parser Widget perfect for my Airport Flight information tab on my Netvibes Universe


I was expecting this widget since the beginning of my Netvibes page.

I wanted to grab a just a piece of a website page. In fact I was looking for the Arrivals or Departures from a chosen airport. But I just needed the landings not the ads ;) or the multiple options for travel fares, car rentals, ...

I could not use the Page Web widget from Netvibes because the data I was looking for were not in the upper left corner ... and this widget has no "padding" option. (And when I requsted if it could be added, Netvibes answered me that they had more urgent matters)

So , I could just get my links and check manually outside Netvibes :(

But this new Widget: AUTOMATIC PARSER from Twisterss is simply what I needed !

So easy to use, and I have tried many "self-called" magic widgets!

For me it is a 5*****/5 Widget : a must have if you need frequent updated data not available sous RSS feed.: graphs, timetables,...

UPDATE: here is an other very positive review from Widgetlab.com:

If this reads as something familiar or known is because it is..this is the way Clipmarks or Listas from Live Labs work.

The only difference is that they do not have the High Spread Distribution model offered by the UWA platform from netvibes and that is reason enough for this to triumph over them and also because neither Clipmarks or Listas Offer any comparable Widget to users from the data collected in their respective services.

This Widget generator service is just the kind of thing that could finally lure some users from their competition and it is now just a matter of seeing how the new Netvibes Engine (ginger) works for them.



Here is the description on the Netvibes Developers Blog who has introduced it to me ;)

"Built by Netvibes user Tristan “Twisterss” Groléat, it features a state-of-the-art HTML parser that allows users to pull just about anything out of any web-page, as long as it can be found using the DOM.

The instructions are sparse, and the usage is quick to grok:

  1. Enter the URL of the webpage
  2. Select the information you are interested in on the preview of the page: one block or many blocks of the same type
  3. Check that the widget really selects what you want
  4. Confirm your selection
  5. The widget displays the information you want, and refreshs it automatically every 20 minutes."
The only modifications I can ask at the moment are:
  1. the option for a SCROLLING up & down for a web page to long like my London Heatrow
  2. the option for a SIZE (W x L) for the final widget

Of course, it depends on the original page to work. So I have arranged an INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT FLIGHT INFORMATION Tab on my Universe:

At the moment I have: New York JFK Airport Arrivals, Brussels National Airport Arrivals and London Heatrow Arrivals. I am not able to get the French Paris CDG .
If NY and Brussels are Ok, the London Heatrow is too big and not well centered but is working.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi,
I will add an option to choose a maximum height to the widget.
You say that you would like to choose the width too, but it depends on your layout in netvibes, not on the widget. Perhaps I haven't good understood what you want ?

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Twisterss

Netviber001 said...

Thanks for you reply Twisterss!

I was thinking also at width, in case you could export the widget outside Netvibes (let say my own blog) or if one day Netvibes will allow a free arranging desplay of the tab (with no columns)

Have you tryied the Paris CDG page ?

Anonymous said...

Yes, I've tried the Paris CDG page, and I have understood why you needed a height value :).
I've added the option. It should allow users to scroll a bit less in your universe.

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Twisterss

Netviber001 said...

Thanks !
But the Paris feed is working for you ?

Anonymous said...

Hi,
I've checked the Paris CDG webpage, and the problem is that it works with javascript. My widget doesn't allow javascript, so the page appears empty. I'm afraid this is not something easy to fix...

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Twisterss

Netviber001 said...

Thanks anyway.
Probably is the same kind of problem for Flash ?

Anonymous said...

No problem for simple flash. It should work. The problem of javascript is that it attemps to modify the structure of the webpage, and it doesn't expect to be in an UWA widget, so it would really not work.

Have you seen http://twisterss.free.fr/api_netvibes/parser/build-widget.php ?
It is the same widget, but lighter and easier to share with others :)
--
Twisterss

Netviber001 said...

Thanks Twisterss,
your api link is not working at the moment: Erreur 404 - Document non trouvé

Will try later!

Anonymous said...

Yeah well,
I made a mistake, the good URL is :
http://twisterss.free.fr/api_netvibes/parser/buildWidget.php

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Twisterss

Netviber001 said...

Twisterss, your link now works and it is nice to know that I could publish my own widget ;)

As you seem quite good at all this, can I ask you: What is necessary for a widget like "WebPage" from netvibes to have an option with PADDING right=x and PADDING down=y ?
That could replace your widget with JavaPages ... by posotionning the widget just on the part of the web page I am interested on ...
Thanks in advance

Anonymous said...

Well, a Web page widget that saves your position in the page wouldn't be that complicated to do :
http://twisterss.free.fr/api_netvibes/webPagePlus/webPagePlus.html
Choose the URL you want, the height of the widget, move with the scrollbars to the position you want.
This position will be saved, you can then remove the scrollbars in the options if you want.
I just wrote this widget after I read your message, so tell me if you see bugs :)

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Twisterss

Netviber001 said...

Thanks a lot!

The are a few problems:

1)I am not able to export it to my own Netvibes page. Widget is sent empty and I am not able to place the URL I want (by copy/paste).
To have the copy paste I went in the edit after a first OK and a blank page. ;)

2) When I change tab, the widgets forgets the scroll position and postion itself in the upper left corner :( That is way iwas asking for Fixed Padding.

Anyway I am impressed by your speed and your work!! It took me longer just to write this post ;)

Anonymous said...

For your second problem, I've fixed it. I haven't really understood or encountered your first problem.

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Twisterss