Yesterday, the folks over at Dilbert.com changed their RSS feed, which is what the comics aggregator was using before to fetch Dilbert, so that method no longer works. Therefore, I had to refactor the Dilbert support in the aggregator. It should be working again. Please let me know if it isn’t. And please consider supporting my work on the comics aggregator if you benefit from it.
Archive for the ‘Comics Aggregator’ Category
Recently, I wrote about why my comics aggregator stopped supporting comic strips distributed by the King Features Syndicate. In a nutshell, King Features changed how their comics are distributed in a way that (a) makes it much harder for my aggregator to scrape them, and (b) makes it 100% clear that they don’t want people scraping their comics.
They’re the copyright holder for these strips, so it’s their right to decide how people are allowed to view them. Aside from the ethical concerns with intentionally bypassing their restrictions, I frankly don’t want them to sue me. So free access to their strips through my aggregator is no longer an option.
However, all of their strips are available for your viewing pleasure at Daily Ink for the low, low price of $1.99 per month or $19.99 per year. With a paid subscription to Daily Ink, you can get King Features strips daily on your smart-phone, tablet or computer, as well as in email.
If that’s good enough for you, then you can go sign up there now and stop reading. However, if you’d like to get strips from Daily Ink all in one place with the other strips you read through my aggregator, then read on.
The folks at the King Features Syndicate have always made their comics harder to aggregate than those of any of the other syndicates. I had implemented a convoluted workaround involving redirecting requests for images of their comics through the comics aggregator itself, where various special headers were inserted into the request to convince the King Features web servers to provide the requested content. That worked for quite a while, but as of today, they’ve apparently turned off their old web servers and replaced them with new ones which use a completely different protocol for requesting content.
In short, King Features comics are no longer working in the aggregator. This means that the following comics are currently broken:’
|Baby Blues||Mallard Fillmore|
|Curtis||Rhymes with Orange|
|Family Circus||Sally Forth|
|Funky Winkerbean||Zippy the Pinhead|
|Hagar The Horrible||Zits|
I’m working on restoring them as best as I can, so you will see them creep back into service one by one as I find new ways to retrieve them (it seems unlikely at this point that I will be able to use a single retrieval method for all of them as I was before), but in the end, some of them may prove to be no longer aggregatable.
I will post another update when I’ve done all that I can to get them back.
By popular demand (i.e., somebody asked), the following comics have been added to my comics aggregator:
- Banana Triangle
- Dog Eat Doug
- F Minus
- Ink Pen
- The Other Coast
- Scary Gary
- Strange Brew
P.S. If you find the aggregator useful, please consider making a donation. Thanks!
UPDATE: Because the author of “Basic Instructions” sometimes publishes his strip after people have already read their daily comics, I’ve also added “Basic Instructions (1-day delay)”, so you can use that one instead if you want to be sure not to miss one!
For those who use my comics aggregator, note that as of yesterday, the comics.com web site has merged into gocomics.com. I’ve just updated the aggregator to reflect this. The comic strip “That’s Life” appears to have been lost in the shuffle; I’ll check again at some point in the future to see if it resurfaces so I can put it back. All other comics are intact.
I’ve also fixed Mother Goose & Grimm, which stopped working at some point in the past and I just noticed today.
As always, please let me know if you want me to add a comic to the line-up.