September 27th, 2004

hair

watching community friends

I'm thinking about an application for a bot that wants to watch the posting activity of friends of a community. There seems to be a few problems with this:

- I can't use the checkfriends protocol because doing so requires logging in, and communities don't have passwords.

- I can't view the community's friends page using a minimal styleid, because communities act like free accounts and can't use user-defined public styles.

- I can't retrieve the friends page as RSS because there is no RSS friends feed.

This leaves me with the last resort, pulling the community's friends page as html and scraping it for the user posting info. I don't want to have to create a new user just to mirror the community's friends. Does anybody have any better ideas?