winter weather warning stopped

Sun, Dec 3, 2006

The winter weather warning parser I wrote in PHP, to load the Met office’s severe weather warning web page has stopped working. So I took a look and they’ve redesigned the page. Not to worry, I’ll just adjust the greps for the new layout. Nope. They’ve trashed it completely. It’s now machine unreadable as it’s all MM_this and MM_that and divs and layers that are auto populated by javascript. So it’s completely useless from a machine’s point of view.

So it got me thinking. How on earth is one to trawl the Semantic Web, looking for interesting content when there is none, as far as a machine is concerned. Seems the combination of Macromedia and Javascript has put the “No Entry” sign up on this particular stretch of the information highway.

Just as the all powerful Daleks were stopped by stairs, so the semantic web grinds to a halt at the foot of the javascript steps.

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