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  1. #1
    Trouble919 is offline Member
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    Default Could a beginner make a program like this?

    How hard would it be to create a program that reads numbers off a website? For example, a program that compared NBA player's stats, and I would get those stats off a website like NBA.com.

    I'm a beginner taking my first OOP class at uni, learning Java. Is this something I could fathomly do if I put in a little effort or is it probably way too advanced for me at the moment?

  2. #2
    AndrewM16921 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Could a beginner make a program like this?

    It really depends how you define "beginner." What are some of the most complicated things you've created to date?

    Also, it depends if you're just reading straight text from a text file located on the web, or if you have to try to maneuver your way through a bunch of markup and such.

  3. #3
    Trouble919 is offline Member
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    Default Re: Could a beginner make a program like this?

    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewM16921 View Post
    It really depends how you define "beginner." What are some of the most complicated things you've created to date?

    Also, it depends if you're just reading straight text from a text file located on the web, or if you have to try to maneuver your way through a bunch of markup and such.
    Very limited. We're only a month into the semester and this is my first real exposure to programming. The most complicated program would probably be just printing text in different patterns using loops. I know this is definitely beyond the scope of that, but how far out of reach is it? Like wayyy out there? Like is the steps just 1) access webpage source code(is this as easy as it sounds?) 2) search for certain text that indicate that the data I want will follow, like "weight: 170 lbs" I would just search for weight 3) read whats after it and store it.

    I feel like I'm making it sound simpler than it is.

    I would be maneuvering through markup, it would just be like a regular sports website with statistics.

    Is this a project that you would give to a beginner with only 1-3 months programming experience, or is it hard to imagine that they could create a program like this? Vague I know, but just trying to get some idea.

  4. #4
    AndrewM16921 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Could a beginner make a program like this?

    Personally, if I was teaching an introductory programming course this is not something I would assign them. But, if you are eager to learn and determined, I don't think it is too far outside of your abilities. I would suggest you get a strong understanding of object oriented programming within java before you tackle this.

    When you do, there are a number of free libraries out there for downloading files (including web pages) in just a few lines of code. Apache's IO libraries have some nice utilities for downloading files. And if I'm not mistaken, some of the java.io or java.net classes have some utilities for grabbing a webpage. Then, from there you might be able to just find where a certain substring is, but as is the case in many webpages a substring may occur many times and in somewhat unpredictable locations.

    If you want to proceed, I would say try doing it in parts. That is, figure out how to grab the source code of a webpage from the internet and access it in Java. Then, mess with Strings and regular expressions a bit. Little by little you'll be able to build yourself up to doing what you want to do.

  5. #5
    Trouble919 is offline Member
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    Default Re: Could a beginner make a program like this?

    We're just now delving deeper into the idea of objects and classes, so I guess I'll wait until I get a stronger understanding of OOP like you suggest.

    Thanks for the breakdown. It gave me some sense of what to expect and what I'll be needing to do. So it's kind of like what I thought but with some unexpected hiccups along the way, like finding the wrong substrings and stuff. I'll definitely try to approach it in parts when I do start it.

    I know my question was vague and difficult to answer, so thanks a lot for the thorough response.

  6. #6
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    DarrylBurke is offline Member
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    Default Re: Could a beginner make a program like this?

    Please go through the Forum Rules, particularly the third paragraph.

    db
    If you're forever cleaning cobwebs, it's time to get rid of the spiders.

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