Re: QRZ again?


w6de
 

I must say I see a large number of requests for QRZ.com Pathfinder help and thus diversion of Dave's, AA6YQ, time to respond to and fix these requests.

However, fixing this may be an ethical issue, not a convenience to DXKeeper users issue.

The DXLab community possibly doesn't understand that the QRZ errors come from Pathfinder's attempt to read a web site intended for human consumption and extracting it's best guess what is the desired QSL/contact/location information. QRZ occasionally changes the format of the data presentation for security, style, and software updates. It is their right to do so. Microsoft changes their offerings regularly. So why can't QRZ?

Guess what? QRZ doesn't want DXLabs or any other program to programmatically access their Web Site. QRZ wants users who desire automated access to their data base to use their paid XML subscription service. Who knows, maybe QRZ allows the user freedom to put their bad constructs on their QRZ pages and makes some of their changes to limit to limit programmatic access to their Web site.
QRZ offers Developer support for their XML service but none for the Free or measured service. This is QRZ's way of telling the user community: if you want automated QRZ service, buy XML service. The bottom line is the QRZ service is NOT FREE, somebody, in this case Dave, AA6YQ, has to pay something, his labor, to make the seemingly free service work. Dave is right, the DXLab community should follow QRZ's lead to use the XML queries.

Quotes from QRZ's Web site:

"XML Logbook Data Service"
"About this Service"
"Our XML Logbook Data service provides a superior, high performance back-end connection to the QRZ database. It is widely supported by most of the top logging and contest programs . With the XML Logbook Data service, your logging program will automatically fetch detailed name, address, and QSL information from our extensive collection of more than 1.3 million callsigns."
.
.
.
"The QRZ XML data port provides callsign info, biography information, and QSL image data in a raw streaming format that connects to a variety of third party software products. The XML interface is fully documented so that programmers can easily adapt the interface to their projects.
How much does a subscription cost?
A full year subscription to the XML Logbook Data service costs just. . ."

So the ethical issue is: does Dave continue to invest his time in a free program to gain free access to another vendor's source of information when that provider prefers automated access by a paid subscription?

I'd recommend that Pathfinder simply pare down the offerings to use only QRZ's XML service. Just like the other paid services in Pathfinder.
This would also make the preferred browser choice issue go away, which is another topic Pathfinder brings up periodically.

Dave, w6de

-----Original Message-----
From: dxlab@... [mailto:dxlab@...]
Sent: 14 July, 2017 16:31
To: dxlab@...
Subject: RE: [dxlab] QRZ again?

AA6YQ comments below
-----Original Message-----
From: dxlab@... [mailto:dxlab@...]
Sent: Friday, July 14, 2017 9:00 AM
To: YahooGroup DXLabs
Subject: [dxlab] QRZ again?

This morning i had QSO with OM6ES, activating a FF-aerea.
On the QRZ page (vie PF) i noticed: “Alias for OK1ES”, togheter with all info abt OK1ES.
The Capture stayed blanco, nothing filled in.
It seems a bit like the former error, when the Callsign of the contacted station contained a slash.
Challenge for our magician?

When I configure the Callbook tab of DXKeeper's Configuration window to use "QRZ.com via Pathfinder", type OM6ES into the Capture window, and strike the Enter key, the Capture window is populated with the correct name, QTH, "QSL Via", "Grid 1", continent, CQ zone, and ITU zone. Logging the QSO shows that the correct postal address is also present.
If that's not working for you, Eddy, that means QRZ is returning information differently for different users, which means that Pathfinder cannot reliably "scrape" callbook information from QRZ.com.
Over the past month, dealing with the changes to QRZ.com has delayed enhancements to Commander, DXView, DXKeeper, and SpotCollector by weeks. Given the several supported alternatives to "QRZ.com via Pathfinder", perhaps the "QRZ.com via Pathfinder" option should be removed from the Callbook tab of DXKeeper's Configuration window.
73,

Dave, AA6YQ



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Posted by: "Dave AA6YQ" <aa6yq@...>
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