I’ve started to learn Python. It’s notoriously quick to protoype ideas for apps (we are told) and my experience this evening is that it is. My end goal is server-side web app development and to this end, I’ve also been investigating AppEngine. More on that anon, perhaps.
My main reference was a little bit jurassic class in Python offered here:
Interest in aviation rekindled by stumbling upon some impressive home-built flight simulator decks, I recalled the METAR standard for meteorological reports. This short-coded form of forecast, I thought, was perfect for SMS – I’d like to have the one for Dublin Airport sent to my phone every 6 hours, I thought. Python, I thought.
In the space of less than a half-hour, I’d cooked up code that would pull a webpage containing METAR info for Dublin Airport (EIDW), scrape it for the long-form METAR data (using regular expressions) and used the webapp backend of Cabbage Texter to forward it to my mobile phone. Now, I’ll aim to set up a cron job on my TCD Netsoc instance to run this script every couple of hours during the day. Cool.