Forum Thread: Website Bot

I am interested in making a website bot. I've googled how-to's but find that they are much more complex than I am needing and I am a noob coder. I am trying to build a bot that can sign-in into multiple accounts in chrome incognito mode and automatically search 30 times on a scheduled clock. I have no direction of where to begin, does anyone have any ideas?

8 Responses

First, you have to find out if those websites offer some kind of API to login, search, post, PM, etc... big sites like Fb, twitter, usually do in a well documented and supported range of languages. If you site doesn't, don't worry, you can code one yourself. API are just meant to make developer's life easier, but you can write your own also for minor websites or any cms out there.

Second, they won't be using chrome or any other browser, they will be done in some language (PHP is perfect for this, so if you don't know PHP already, this where you want to start). If you need real browser support, there are other ways that automate your pc behaviour, but I don't reccomend them (not stylish, they are usually for fooling ad companies into believing you click in every banner).

What kind of websites you want to build this bot for ? What should it do with the information retrieved ?

Thank you TRIPHAT,

I wanted to create it for Google/Bing. I thought it would be a simple bot that can offer some real life knowledge of how bots work. If i could have it search and just dump the first two result's URL in seperate text files, that would be plenty for me since I'm just learning. Codecademy teaches PHP so I'll look into that, but are there any tools to automate a browser to run at a specific time as long as the computer is on?

I can tell you that google will complain when you automate raw search... after a few attempts it will ask for captchas, so I'd really suggest you go for the API way (I always prefer coding from scratch, as API usually requires registration and I don't bother making useless new accounts). Don't know about Bing.

If you really need a tool, you can look into this

Last but not least, I really suggest to get into PHP, it's fast to learn and really versatile for a lot of stuff.

Okay great. I don't know much about API's but if you think it's better for the long run, I will do that method. But from some quick Googling, it seems that I can make a API with PHP that connects to Google's website and automates what I need? Do you think this project is feasible in 3 months for a beginner?

"Machine Learning for Hackers"
"Data Science from Scratch"
"Web Scraping with Python: Collecting Data from the Modern Web"

Thank you Hitch!

If you make your own API, it's likely that google will detect automated search and block it quick. So you are somehow forced to use theirs (that doesn't mean you don't have to try manual way first tho...) it should be free as long as you don't have to fire thousand requests per hour.

In 3 months with proper tutoring, you could go from Zero to Hero if you are sufficiently motivated in what you do and put your effort for the goal. You will not learn all, but enough to accomplish the mission.

Is it a personal project or school project ( = due date, or free time hobby) ?

Personal project, but I like to make deadlines for myself so I don't slack. Thank you for your advice Triphat, you've saved me a lot of time!

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