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Web Scraping - web scraping, screen scraping, data parsing and other related things

New European e-communication regulations and web scraping

GDPR-eu-rulesGeneral Data Protection Regulation or GDPR: enforcement date –  25 May 2018. The GDPR covers the matter of online user data privacy rules for electronic communication and data protection. The regulation includes modern communication messengers and services, eg. Skype, Viber, Gmail, etc., that have not been previously mentioned in the former EU e-communication directives.   more…

Design patterns for hierarchical data storage and effective processing

The hierarchical data storage problem is a non-trivial task in relational database context. For example, your online shop has goods of different categories and subcategories creating tree spans for 5 levels. How should they be stored in a database?

Luckily, there are several approaches (design patterns) that will help the developer to design database structure without both odd tables and code. As a result, the site will work faster and any changes, even on database layer, won’t cause troubles. We will study these approaches below. more…

Big Data Basics

big-data-worldPower of Big Data: capabilities and perspectives

As everyone knows, technological development is evolving flash like. At the same time software requirements, approaches and algorithms are growing with equal speed.  In particular, relatively recently, developers have faced the problem of huge data volume processing – making it necessary to create a new, effective approach, a new paradigm of data storage. The solution was not long in coming – in 2011 huge companies all over the world started using the Big Data concept. In this article we will talk about this engaging approach. more…

SQL-injection: how to use them and how to defend against them

sql-injection-logoSQL (Structured Query Language) is a powerful language for working with relational databases, but quite a few people are in fact ignorant of the dark side of this language, which is called SQL-injection. Anyone who knows this language well enough can extract the needed data from your site by means of SQL – unless developers build defenses against SQL-injection, of course. Let’s discuss how to hack data and how to secure your web resource from these kinds of data leaks! more…

Web parsing php tools

Almost all developers have faced a parsing data task. Needs can be different –  from a product catalog to parsing stock pricing. Parsing is a very popular direction in back-end development; there are specialists creating quality parsers and scrapers. Besides, this theme is very interesting and appeals to the tastes of everyone who enjoys web. Today we review php tools used in parsing web content. more…

PHPxcel for importing and exporting data in working with Excel

Sometimes when you are developing a project, it might be necessary to do a parsing of xls documents. To give an example: you do a synchronization between xls worksheets and a website database, and you need to convert xls data to the Mysql and want to do it completely automatically.

If you work with Windows it is simple enough – you just need to use COM objects. However, it is another thing if you work with PHP and need to make it work under the UNIX systems. Fortunately there are many classes and libraries for this purpose. One of them is the class PHPExcel. This library is completely cross-platform, so you will not have problems with portability.  more…

Web Scraping with Java and HtmlUnit

java-htmlunit-post-front-cover-smallWeb scraping or crawling is the act of fetching data from a third party website by downloading and parsing the HTML code to extract the data you want. It can be done manually, but generally this term refers to the automated process of downloading the HTML content of a page, parsing/extracting the data, and saving it into a database for further analysis or use. more…