Wednesday, August 30, 2006

MoleculBlogInfo RSS Feed Now Generated by Java

A few tardy posts on recent work.  The RSS feed for usefulchem-
is now being generated automatically by a java version of
MoleculeBlogInfo.xls.  The java software currently runs as a scheduled service on my machine, downloading and processing the usefulchem-molecules blog every night, and uploading a new feed only when necessary.  A new feed is generated only if the blog has changed.  The software maintains a log file so that it can be monitored.  A zip file containing this software can be found at here.

There are two advantages to working with Java over Excel VBA.  One is portability to other platforms -- Excel of course only runs on Windows.   Another is the object-oriented features of Java, which make large software projects easier to design and maintain.  (A third advantage is that Java is free, of course.)  Finally, as there are freely available Java libraries which can generate Excel files, there is really no need to use VBA (okay, four advantages!).  No, not finally, as Java's extensive support for internet protocols and classes (sockets, HTTP, FTP, etc.) is also extensive.


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