Gosh, Christmas already?

Christmas has come rather quickly this year! However, as it is now upon us it seems like as good a time as any to wish you, dear reader, a Merry Christmas, however you choose to celebrate it.

I seem to have had a few productive days since my holiday began on Thursday afternoon. I spent yesterday trying to track down splogs in Technoranki using SpolgSpot. Sadly, SplogSpot’s database seems to be full of rubbish. Yes, the do have some splogs in it, but they have more than 100 of our valid blogs in their database too (including our very own BritBlog Blog!). I just couldn’t be bothered checking all the ones it threw up as none that I checked were actually splogs.

So after yesterday’s rather failed attmept to locate splogs, I switched my efforts to locating dead and missing blogs in the BritBlog directory. I’ve written a little tool that goes and visits all the blogs in the directory and decides if the blog us there or not.

I’m going to run it each day (probably), and if a blog is missing more than 10 times in a row say, I’ll remove it from the database (probably after emailing the owner to tell them).

There is some room for improvement with this: for example I haven’t decided what to do with URL redirects yet. I think I need to sort out the trailing slash issue first, then worry about the remainder of these issues. It’s been a good chance to have a practice with Python though. Seems like a good language, but I’ve got a long way to go ;-)

Anyhoo, the tool seems to be doing it’s job so I’ll bolt it into the live application over the next few days. Will be good to remove some of the deadwood from the directory. That remonds me, the spider is running silently in the background. There’s a lot of work to do before it can go live, but it should be another useful tool in the battle to purge dead blogs from the directory.

Right, can’t sit up all night — I don’t want to scare off Santa!

Merry Christmas!

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