This article (an improved .NET version of my C++ version) describes
WebResourceProvider, a simple yet powerful framework for retrieving useful information from public sources on the web, such as:
Apart from being rewritten in C# from the ground up, this .NET version offers a smaller footprint than its C++ predecessor and makes it easy (almost trivial) to encapsulate functionality offered by online services into an object that can be manipulated by your application. Here are screenshots of some
WebResourceProvider applications (listed at the end of this article) in action.
Simple RSS Reader
A Word of Caution
Before you use
WebResourceProvider to write the next killer app, be aware that there are legal and ethical issues regarding the use of information obtained from other sources. In particular, the terms of service (TOS) of content providers such as Yahoo, CNN, etc. clearly state what you can and cannot do with information retrieved from their sites. Even if you write a web resource provider for personal use only, you should take into consideration any undue stress that your object may put on a web server. The object's
Pause property allows you to inject a delay between successive HTTP requests to help prevent overloading a server.
How it Works
C# applications (with full source code) that use
WebResourceProvider can be found here:
- 17 Feb 2008
Updated links to sample applications.
- 15 Jan 2006
Ravi Bhavnani is an ardent fan of Microsoft technologies who loves building Windows apps, especially PIMs, system utilities, and things that go bump on the Internet. During his career, Ravi has developed expert systems, desktop imaging apps, marketing automation software, EDA tools, a platform to help people find, analyze and understand information, trading software for institutional investors and advanced data visualization solutions. He currently works for a company that provides enterprise workforce management solutions to large clients.
His interests include the .NET framework, reasoning systems, financial analysis and algorithmic trading, NLP, HCI and UI design. Ravi holds a BS in Physics and Math and an MS in Computer Science and was a Microsoft MVP (C++ and C# in 2006 and 2007). He is also the co-inventor of 3 patents on software security and generating data visualization dashboards. His claim to fame is that he crafted CodeProject's "joke" forum post icon.
Ravi's biggest fear is that one day he might actually get a life, although the chances of that happening seem extremely remote.