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LiveJournal Client Discussions

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kinglink@gmail.com [Nov. 14th, 2005|07:42 pm]
LiveJournal Client Discussions
I'm a young developer looking for some pointers into where to start on a client API/other interface
I recently got some free time, and I have wanted to do some programming of stuff that I want, to sharpen and gain skills, as well as to build tools for X and Y. (being unknown objects and quantities at the present). I've a few interests currently but none have really jumped any great ideas at me, however I've wanted to look into programming some widgets for communications to websites/servers, I've done quite a bit of work regarding Client Server programming, however at the time I have programmed both or had full access to both source codes (trial and erroring, with access to both server and client)

One thing that has interested me is LJ, I've a decent sized journal here, and I've thought at one point. "damm I've always wanted to have an archive this thing" as flipping through all the pages tends to grow weary as when I started making a journal I was verbose and "previous 20 entries" appears to only go back 60, which doesn't help too much, and then of course 1+1 added up and I figured that I'd like to look into some sort of client widget program.

Basically I need a little more advice about the site and how to write this. Will I actually need the XML-RPC or just HTML? (I'm using C++ and have a decent grasp on Socket and reading them, though less on actual HTML) So now I'm wondering will I be using the RPC interface (I didn't notice anything there for getting actual entries, so I get the feeling it might be a mixture, but there's some functions that might be helpful if for more advance stuff there's no pages for as well as stuff for getting which days I've posted on)

Should I focus on learning how to do the actual HTTP POST calls, look into the XML-RPC (I've never used XML) or is there another step I should take before jumping into either of those? I've a great grasp of C++, as well as Java, and socket programming, I can code HTML (though my pages tend to look like yawners) but as I meantioned never worked that much on HTTP calls through sockets or such.

I was hoping to use this for this site, and for the most part just be a learning experience for me, as well as a way for me to show off some skill in case I need an example of work for a future employer (unfortunately my current work is either one sided (client that have no servers) and/or confidential depending on which projects I'm talking about) I'm not yet thinking about anything the size or shame of a full client, though if it goes well, there's definitely a possibility I may consider that if the systems/layers and me mesh well.)

Anyways there's basically a road map of stuff I'm considering, any advice on where to really get started if I'm going to actually move towards this "archiver" (There's a couple other projects in my mind, though this one is one I'd actually love to use at some point)

I appreciate any comments and help. Thank you in advance.

From: eyeh8u
2005-11-16 07:37 pm (UTC)
The primary api for livejournal appears to be the LJ flat api, rather than it's "Poor Cousin" limited XML-RPC derivative.

i.e. all LJ functionality is available over flat, not all over XML-RPC

So, if you're new to writing HTTP traffic applications, I'd go with flat, where you just have to construct and read essentially flat files that are transmitted over HTTP, rather than look into the added overhead of doing XML-RPC.

Of course, given that, there are probably pre-existing XML-RPC libs for C++ and Java out there that may end up making XML-RPC easier for you to write.

It's a choice between UTF-8 text and XML-RPC, HTML doesn't enter into the protocol.
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From: kinglink
2005-11-21 12:02 am (UTC)
I've looked over the API and see that I probably need a little work towards HTTP. However I'm not sure how to convert stuff like http://www.livejournal.com/doc/server/ljp.csp.flat.login.html towards a HTTP request.

Is there a good link to discuss how to use the HTTP requests need to be formated, I'm a bit confused on how this works. I'm pretty sure I open a talk socket to port 80 at www.livejournal.com and send a request. However wording that request correctly eludes me. (and I don't see a good source to follow on that though)

Also as the challenge system, I'm a bit confused on the authentication system. I'm sure after I send a request I'll be able to see it and try to figure out what it means. But any advice you guys can give me would help me.

Thank you in advanced.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
From: evan
2005-11-16 08:33 pm (UTC)
I'd suggest starting with writing a program that can post to LJ, as downloading an offline copy is much more complicated. If you can figure that out, come back here and ask for more help...

And yeah, I think you want to use the flat protocol. It's more programming experience for you anyway.
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