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Manual Reference Pages  -  WWW::COMIC (3)

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NAME

WWW::Comic - Retrieve comic strip images

CONTENTS

SYNOPSIS



 use strict;
 use WWW::Comic qw();

 # Create a WWW::Comic object
 my $wc = new WWW::Comic;

 # Get a list of supported comics
 my @comics = $wc->comics;

 # Allow HTTP requests to retrieve a full list of supported
 # comics if necessary (some plugins may not know what comics
 # they support until they make an HTTP request)
 my @comics = $wc->comics(probe => 1);

 for my $comic (@comics) {
     # Get the most recent comic strip URL for $comic
     my $url = $comic->strip_url(comic => $comic);
     
     # Download the most recent comic strip
     # for $comic in to $blob
     my $blob = $comic->get_strip(comic => $comic);
     
     # Write the most recent comic strip for
     # $comic to disk
     my $filename = $comic->mirror_strip(comic => $comic);
 }



DESCRIPTION

This module will download cartoon comic strip images from various websites and return a binary blob of the image, or write it to disk. Multiple comic strips can be supported through subclassed plugin modules.

A number of plugin modules are bundled as part of this distrubution. You may want to refer to their documentation for any additional custom methods and features. Specifically, WWW::Comic::Plugin::UFS and WWW::Comic::Plugin::uComics require use of the probe paramater with the comics method on order to retrieve a list of supported commics.

To find out what plugin modules you currently have installed and available, run the following:



 perl -MWWW::Comic -MData::Dumper -e"print Dumper([WWW::Comic->new->plugins]);"



METHODS

    new



 my $wc = new WWW::Comic;



Creates a new WWW::Comic object.

    comics



 my @comics = $wc->comics(probe => 1);



Returns a list of available comics. The probe paramater is optional. (See below).
probe This paramater is an optional boolean value supported by a few plugins that do not automatically know what comics they support. Specifying a boolean true value for this paramater will tell those plugins that they should make HTTP requests to find out what comics they can make available. Plugins should cache this information in memory once they have performed an initial probe.

    strip_url



 # Get the URL of the most recent "mycomic" comic image
 my $url = $wc->strip_url(comic => "mycomic");

 # Get the URl of a specific "mycomic" comic image
 my $specificStripUrl = $wc->strip_url(
                             comic => "mycomic",
                             id => 990317
                         );



Returns the URL of a comic strip. The comic paramater is mandatory and must be a valid supported comic as listed by the comics() method. The most recent comic strip image URL will be returned unless otherwise specified (see the id paramater below).

This method will return an undef value upon failure.

The id paramater is optional and can be used to specify a specific comic (if supported by the plugin in question). Comic IDs are typically date based in some way, but this is unique to each comic and follows no special format for the purposes of this module. See each plugin module’s documentation for further information.
comic This paramater is mandatory. It specifies the comic that this method should process. See the comics() method.
id This paramater is optional. It specifies a specfic comic that should be processed.

    get_strip



 # Retrieve the most recent "mycomic" comic strip image
 my $imageBlob = $wc->get_strip(comic => "mycomic");

 # Retrieve a specific "mycomic" comic strip image
 my $image2 = $wc->get_strip(
                        comic => "mycomic",
                        id => "0042304973"
                    );



Downloads a copy of a comic strip image and returns the binary data as a scalar. The comic paramater is mandatory and must be a valid supported comic as listed by the comics() method. The most recent comic strip image will be returned unless otherwise specified.

This method will return an undef value upon failure.
comic This paramater is mandatory. It specifies the comic that this method should process. See the comics() method.
id This paramater is optional. It specifies a specfic comic that should be processed.
url This paramater is optional. It specifies a specific comic that should be processed. If specified it must be a fully qualified and valid absolute HTTP URL. This paramater is typically only used when being called indirectly by the mirror_strip() method.

    mirror_strip



 # Write the most recent "mycomic" comic strip to disk
 # and return the name of the file that was written
 my $filename = $wc->mirror_strip(comic => "mycomic");

 # Write the "mycomic" comic strip image (reference 132)
 # to disk, specifcally to mycomic.gif, and return the
 # actual filename that was written to disk in to $file2
 my $file2 = $wc->mirror_strip(
                       comic => "mycomic",
                       id => "132",
                       filename => "mycomic.gif"
                  );



Download a copy of a comic strip image and write it to disk, returning the name of the file that was actually written. This method accepts the same paramaters as the get_strip() method, with the addition of the filename paramater.

This method will return an undef value upon failure.
comic This paramater is mandatory. It specifies the comic that this method should process. See the comics() method.
id This paramater is optional. It specifies a specfic comic that should be processed.
url This paramater is optional. It specifies a specific comic that should be processed. If specified it must be a fully qualified and valid absolute HTTP URL.
filename This paramater is optional. It specifiec the target filename that you would like to be written to disk. If you do not supply an image file extension, one will be added for you automatically. If you specify an image file extension that differs to the file format of the file that is to ultimately be written disk, it will be altered for you automatically.

    plugins



 my @plugins = $wc->plugins;



Return a list of loaded plugins.

PLUGINS

Support for different comics is handled through the WWW::Comic::Plugin superclass. See the POD for WWW::Comic::Plugin on how to create a new plugin.

SEE ALSO

WWW::Comic::Plugin, WWW::Dilbert, WWW::VenusEnvy

VERSION

$Id: Comic.pm,v 1.5 2006/01/10 15:45:44 nicolaw Exp $

AUTHOR

Nicola Worthington <nicolaw@cpan.org>

<http://perlgirl.org.uk>

COPYRIGHT

Copyright 2006 Nicola Worthington.

This software is licensed under The Apache Software License, Version 2.0.

<http://www.apache.org/licenses/LICENSE-2.0>

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