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4.6 out of 5 stars7
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on March 9, 2012
I was looking for something not necessarily to make bots but analyze webpages and do automated searches. I found the information I needed here, plus learned a lot of tips if I ever wanted to make a serious bot.

It mixes theory and practical application very well. I would think if you were writing a serious in depth bot this would be the bible for doing so. It has many examples of the concepts it discusses. It talked a bit over my head in some areas but it's a great book. The author clearly knows the subject very well.

I did have a hard time with some of the code getting it to work, but I don't blame the book. The examples were set up in such a way that I could figure it out and make it run.

I think this author mainly sells books by word of mouth, which is how I found it, which probably explains why there aren't many reviews for it. Don't let that sway you, this is a great book.
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on September 2, 2008
I've had this book for a few months and it is the best published bot book.
It tells you need to know about the http protocol to extract data from a site which use javascript and ajax! The parsing libraries are very help, though some tweaking is always necessary given the magnitude of sites.
If you need to write a bot, but don't know how, this book it for you.
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on December 7, 2013
If you know some c# and want to write a bot it is fine. Recipes work, logic is clear. It clearly explains what you need to do.
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on October 26, 2015
First half of the book I noticed that there are a few code smells, for instance most of the objects, like "parsers" could have been refactored as static method groups instead of objects. I don't know if there is code later on in the book which uses these same implementations, only giving them purpose to be implemented in that manner, but I am beginning to doubt that's the case. I think this code smell is called "the stateless object" but am unsure. Also, there are other frameworks out there for parsing HTTP, such as the HTML agility pack. This pack might not have been around when this book was written, I would have to look up the dates. I will continue reading this book, it is still a fairly good introduction to web spiders, but everybody should be aware of the code smell.
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on November 24, 2015
Mr. Heatons books always take a sensible and practical approach to programming. Very good read. I always seek out his writings on these subjects.
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on August 29, 2015
Good. I like.
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on January 28, 2008
the author website do not have his last spider in dotnet, only java
and the source code of his spider is only available in java.
but even tough, the recipes are helpful and save time.
to get the most of this book you needs to be a self-learner.
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