C-Kermit Case Study #24

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Article: 13566 of comp.protocols.kermit.misc
Subject: Case Study: Lynx/Kermit Coordination (Part II)
From: "Dallas E. Legan" <Use-Author-Address-Header@[127.1]>
Author-Address: dallasii AT kincyb DOT com
Date: Wed, 31 Jul 2002 04:44:57 -0700
Newsgroups: comp.protocols.kermit.misc
Lines: 378

Case Study: Lynx/Kermit Coordination (Part II) - Kermit Finds Jobs

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Note: This article is not intended either to endorse or disparage
http://www.dice.com, but simply to describe the author's use of the service.
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I had one of the leaders of the local USENIX chapter review my resume for suggested changes and he urged me to check for jobs on www.dice.com.

At first I looked at Dice a little, somewhat discouraged by previous experiences with online job boards. Then I had the idea of automating the process of sending resumes to the finds that came up, and really get after things. Sophisticated time/motion studies weren't needed to realize that only 3 or 4 keystrokes were needed to navigate from one search find to another. In vi cursor control mode these were barely more than finger twitches. To actually send information to to the firm in question though, chewed up several times that many keystrokes and constituted the real bottleneck in using the service. Just see the commented-out 'mailto:' sequence for Lynx in the script below. Then there were editor commands to read in a resume.

One thing I noticed was that the 'mailto:' links were not truly 'mailto:'s. While displaying as mail addresses, in fact they were http:...cgi?... style links apparently doing some things in the background. What I didn't exactly know. Trying to go to one directly from a command line invocation of the browsers I have seemed to paralyze the browser.

The first stab at this was a Rexx script (using the Regina GPL'd interpreter) to be run as a Lynx Extern program, (see http://www.columbia.edu/kermit/case20.html, Part I of this series.) tearing apart the CGI URL and mailing a resume to the firm listing the position. (See the comments in the listing below.) The reason for picking this language was that it seemed like a simple minded use of the Rexx Parse command. I tried running this a few days on what turned up, but the mailings seemed to do nothing whatever. Maybe something important was going on with the CGI script at the server?

The next try at this would use the actual http URL going through the whole process of punching in the browser questions for sending mail. Working on this a Friday afternoon, I would run Lynx inside a C-Kermit pseudoterminal session, (C-Kermit 8.0.200, 12 Dec 2001, running on Debian Linux 2.2) and rough out the first version of a script that would set and react when Kermit detected a 'trigger string' in the browsing session. In this first version, I would activate the 'mail' CGI link, and and the trigger string 'Using mailto:' would show up on the Lynx advanced user