Quick Way to Scan 100 In-Progress Web Pages
August 9, 2016 8:37 AM   Subscribe

I'm working on a project where I'm building out 100 texty web pages, all with the same format, but different content within that format. I frequently need to zip through some or all of these pages, to scan for problems, incompleteness, special cases, etc. I'd like a non-clumsy way to do this scanning.

I currently multi-select bookmarks to have Safari open these pages as tabs, then command-arrow to navigate through. This is ungainly, especially if I want to scan more than 10 or 15 of them.

Ideally I'd view live snapshots of at least the top portion of each page in a cascading fan, and be able to quickly/easily zoom in on one, then zoom back out, super fast. If not that, then some other way to "fly around" and survey 100 web pages without opening 100 tabs.

Does anything like this exist, either as an app for my Mac or as a web app? Note that page sources do not and cannot live on my drive.
posted by Quisp Lover to Computers & Internet (12 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
Clarification: when I say I'd view "live snapshots", I mean they'd be current at the moment I start this process, and "freeze" there. I wouldn't need anything as fancy as dynamic updates during my scan.
posted by Quisp Lover at 8:39 AM on August 9, 2016


Would 'Show All Tabs' in Safari work? Available through the view menu or cmd-shfit-\.
posted by jeffch at 8:50 AM on August 9, 2016


If you're on a Mac you can use webkit2png to create snapshots using the terminal.

Using webkit2png here's a quick bash script to get screenshots from a bunch of URLS.
#!/bin/bash
while IFS='' read -r line || [[ -n "$line" ]]; do
webkit2png --ignore-ssl-check -F $line
echo "Done: $line"
done < "$1"
Save that down as a file named something like getscreenshots.sh . Then create a file called something like inputurls.txt; add one url per line to inputurls.txt.

Then run the script like this: ./getscreenshots.sh inputurls.txt

The folder will fill up with screenshots of the webpages; then you can use preview or whatever image viewing program you like to flip through the images.
posted by gregr at 9:35 AM on August 9, 2016


jeffch: As I said, "I currently multi-select bookmarks to have Safari open these pages as tabs, then command-arrow to navigate through. This is ungainly, especially if I want to scan more than 10 or 15 of them."

gregr: These pages are dynamically under construction (though they are online). I'd need to create these hundred screenshots freshly every time I wanted to scan the pages! Also, while I didn't specifically ask for it, I'd ideally prefer the zoom-in view to be browserish, and not just an image (so I can select text, click buttons, etc).
posted by Quisp Lover at 9:40 AM on August 9, 2016


Misunderstood what you meant by "snapshots".

Maybe create a single page that puts all of your webpages into iframes?
posted by gregr at 10:15 AM on August 9, 2016


You can use a service like Change Detection to keep track of actual changes to the pages. That should substantially cut down the number of pages you have to check. There are also Chrome plugins available that do the same thing.

If change detection isn't needed, you can also use a screenshot service.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 10:29 AM on August 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Forgot to mention: typically this type of work is done in your CMS as part of a workflow. Your authors write their texts and submit them for review. Alternatively, you have a queue of published texts so that you can review new and old texts, easily compare different versions, etc. Makes it easier to systemically detect and solve problems before they reach your readers.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 10:37 AM on August 9, 2016


Thanks, all.

I'm surprised there's not obvious prior art on this. I guess it's more of an edge case need than I'd imagined.
posted by Quisp Lover at 12:17 PM on August 9, 2016


You miiiight have some luck with tab groups in Firefox. (Recently moved from the mainline browser into an extension, but still functional as far as I know.)
posted by brennen at 2:03 PM on August 9, 2016


100 of em?
posted by Quisp Lover at 5:21 PM on August 9, 2016


Eh, it's perhaps worth a shot. I wouldn't expect too much.
posted by brennen at 8:07 PM on August 9, 2016


If it were me, and my screen resolution were high enough, I would manually create a local HTML file that contains (at the top of the page) a table with text links to the 100 pages. Below that would be an iframe that would display whichever page you click on above. I don't think this method would enable you to zoom-in/out, however.
posted by see_change at 10:14 AM on August 10, 2016


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