3 September 2007

Menu search on EventNett

I've added the ability to search restaurant menus on EventNett. Users can edit restaurant entries and add URLs for their menus. EventNett will read the contents of the menus and update the database with menu items, descriptions, and prices. You can then search for specific dishes. Here's a list of events at restaurants in Midtown that serve lamb. You can view the full menus and links at the bottom of the restaurants' location pages. Here's Ecco's page with their late night and dinner menus. Price ranges are also displayed.

This is a first draft, so bla-bla-bla. There's so far few menus added, it doesn't parse PDFs yet, and the HTML on a very few menu pages is so chaotic that EventNett can't find anything of value and may return nonsense. Finally, screen-scraping is an uncertain art at best, so menus will be only 90% accurate. It remains to be seen whether that's valuable enough.

I had the idea last weekend when Lisa & I were out trying to remember where we had mini-burger appetizers. We never figured it out, but the a-ha moment came soon after.

[ posted by sstrader on 3 September 2007 at 1:04:22 PM in Programming ]