Working random fact generator

wget -O - 2>/dev/null | grep \<strong\> | sed "s;^.*<i>\(.*\)</i>.*$;\1;"
Though without infinite time and knowledge of how the site will be designed in the future this may stop working, it still will serve as a simple straight forward starting point. This uses the observation that the only item marked as strong on the page is the single logical line that includes the italicized fact. If future revisions of the page show failure, or intermittent failure, one may simply alter the above to read. wget -O - 2>/dev/null | tee lastfact | grep \<strong\> | sed "s;^.*<i>\(.*\)</i>.*$;\1;" The file lastfact, can then be examined whenever the command fails.

2 Alternatives + Submit Alt

  • extension to tali713's random fact generator. It takes the output & sends it to notify-osd. Display time is proportional to the lengh of the fact.

    wget -O - 2>/dev/null | grep \<strong\> | sed "s;^.*<i>\(.*\)</i>.*$;\1;" | while read FUNFACT; do notify-send -t $((1000+300*`echo -n $FUNFACT | wc -w`)) -i gtk-dialog-info "RandomFunFact" "$FUNFACT"; done
    mtron · 2010-04-02 09:43:32 1
  • This is a working version, though probably clumsy, of the script submitted by felix001. This works on ubuntu and CygWin. This would be great as a bash function, defined in .bashrc. Additionally it would work as a script put in the path. Show Sample Output

    lynx -dump | grep -A 3 U | sed 1D
    xizdaqrian · 2009-05-05 07:52:10 8

What Others Think

Pretty cool. I would just change a couple of things. You can use the -q option with wget rather than redirecting stderr to /dev/null. Sed can also do the job of the grep. wget -qO- | sed -n "/<strong>/{s;^.*<i>\(.*\)</i>.*$;\1;p}" Or versions of grep that support PCRE can do the job of the sed: wget -qO- | grep -Po '(?<=<strong><i>)[^<]+(?=</i></strong>)'
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