The basic concept is that we can use a variety of techniques to automate any manual process you might use to obtain information from the Internet. The specific case of interest is one where you fill in information onto a form on a web page and receive the information of interest on a new web page. This tutorial assumes that you are using a Unix (or Linux) operating system. It may be possible to perform the same steps on a Windows/DOS system, but I probably can't help you with the details.
Special thanks to Paula Pfleiger for introducing me to this whole concept.
The basic steps are
Some examples include collecting prices on stocks from a financial data base, collecting water source information from the EPA, compiling a price list from a list of ISBN book numbers, finding latitude and longitude from a list of zip codes, etc. The only limitation is your imagination and ingenuity (plus occasionally limits set by database owners on the number of queries, e.g. at www.555-1212.com).
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