dailystrips: Gasping for air

Just for the record, I don’t expect a program 10 years out of development to sing along without a care in the world.

On the other hand, I do make use of software that pushes possibly as far back as the 1980s, not counting core programs that have been around since the dawn of technology.

Point being, 10 years without attention is not too far gone.

For dailystrips though, it’s not the underlying software that changed, it’s the targets of the software.

2013-09-30-v5-122p-dailystrips

I’m being cryptic, and I apologize. See, dailystrips is a great idea — a simple perl script that seeks out the day’s comic strips that you like, downloads the images and lumps them all together on a simple HTML page.

The more you think about it, the more brilliant it is: Rather than wander from site to site loading up all the garbage that comes with those comics, dailystrips peels out the image you actually want to see, and puts it on a vanilla page that loads in seconds. Fractions of seconds.

The problem is, as time has gone on, those sites have either changed or rearranged their content. And like I hinted, dailystrips has gone without updates since (apparently) 2003.

Long and short, for every four or five comics I tried to use with daily strips, I got one, maybe two that still worked. You can see in the screenshot that two out of four there were working, at best.

It depends on the host and probably the comic too. If you’ve got time on your hands I suppose you could pick through and see which ones don’t work, but the home page brags that dailystrips — in its prime — supported more than 550 comics.

You’d really have your work cut out for you.

Personally I’m a fan of any application or program that does the work of yanking actual content out of the swirling pool of muck that obscures the Internet.

The fact that this one is gasping for air makes the state of affairs all the more … disheartening. 😦

P.S., To get this rolling, you’ll need your distro’s version of perl’s lwp-protocol-https. In Arch, that’s perl-lwp-protocol-https and in Debian it should be liblwp-protocol-https-perl.

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