I made a useful Twitter bot this week

Twitter bot

landing page here – kc.marineinfos.com

When i’m not a programming , well i’m sailing. One thing every boaters know is the importance of having a good weather source and checking it often, yeah we don’t really like surprise. One source of i look up to is environment Canada marine forecast. Thing is i need to check it myself, and there’s virtually no way to know that what i am looking at will in fact be updated in 2 minutes with some crucial information that i will only get whenever i check it again, not so great. EC for environment Canada has Twitter account for weather alerts but it’s only for alerts, we want to be updated on whatever will change not only alerts, when your boating a slight wind increase or change of direction can have a real impact on your happiness. Also those alerts are not specific to marine, weather on water can be quite different than the one on land.

So i started to look at how i could make something to solve the problem. Also i wanted a solution that i could easily make available to others. First i look at how i could get the data and update it. Do i scrap, hum scrapping is kind of bad don’t you think? Most web site don’t allow or like you do it. But in this case i guess EC is a public service right, but still scraping makes you more accountable because the data can be modified. After thinking about it a bit i found out EC have Atom RSS feed. Voilà that’s what i need to monitor. Let start then, using Python i made an AWS Lambda function that would be running every 5 minutes, reads the feed and parse it to see updated was published since last execution, if so it would be tweeted using the EC link on Twitter handle @KCMarineInfos whcih is for Kingston to Cornwall marine informations.

This week i did test it and since it seems it was working great i decided to get ahead buy a domain name and host it permanently. For that i created a landing page that you can see here at kc.marineinfos.com.

In a later post i will explain how i did it in details and maybe do some videos on Youtube. So keep coming back for more.

I am always looking for contract, don’t hesitate to contact me.