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Web::Scraper - Web Scraping Toolkit using HTML and CSS Selectors or XPath expressions


  use URI;
  use Web::Scraper;

  # First, create your scraper block
  my $tweets = scraper {
      # Parse all LIs with the class "status", store them into a resulting
      # array 'tweets'.  We embed another scraper for each tweet.
      process "li.status", "tweets[]" => scraper {
          # And, in that array, pull in the elementy with the class
          # "entry-content", "entry-date" and the link
          process ".entry-content", body => 'TEXT';
          process ".entry-date", when => 'TEXT';
          process 'a[rel="bookmark"]', link => '@href';

  my $res = $tweets->scrape( URI->new("") );

  # The result has the populated tweets array
  for my $tweet (@{$res->{tweets}}) {
      print "$tweet->{body} $tweet->{when} (link: $tweet->{link})\n";

The structure would resemble this (visually) { tweets => [ { body => $body, when => $date, link => $uri }, { body => $body, when => $date, link => $uri }, ] }


Web::Scraper is a web scraper toolkit, inspired by Ruby's equivalent Scrapi. It provides a DSL-ish interface for traversing HTML documents and returning a neatly arranged Perl data strcuture.

The scraper and process blocks provide a method to define what segments of a document to extract. It understands HTML and CSS Selectors as well as XPath expressions.



  $scraper = scraper { ... };

Creates a new Web::Scraper object by wrapping the DSL code that will be fired when scrape method is called.


  $res = $scraper->scrape(URI->new($uri));
  $res = $scraper->scrape($html_content);
  $res = $scraper->scrape(\$html_content);
  $res = $scraper->scrape($http_response);
  $res = $scraper->scrape($html_element);

Retrieves the HTML from URI, HTTP::Response, HTML::Tree or text strings and creates a DOM object, then fires the callback scraper code to retrieve the data structure.

If you pass URI or HTTP::Response object, Web::Scraper will automatically guesses the encoding of the content by looking at Content-Type headers and META tags. Otherwise you need to decode the HTML to Unicode before passing it to scrape method.

You can optionally pass the base URL when you pass the HTML content as a string instead of URI or HTTP::Response.

  $res = $scraper->scrape($html_content, "");

This way Web::Scraper can resolve the relative links found in the document.


  scraper {
      process "tag.class", key => 'TEXT';
      process '//tag[contains(@foo, "bar")]', key2 => '@attr';
      process '//comment()', 'comments[]' => 'TEXT';

process is the method to find matching elements from HTML with CSS selector or XPath expression, then extract text or attributes into the result stash.

If the first argument begins with "//" or "id(" it's treated as an XPath expression and otherwise CSS selector.

  # <span class="date">2008/12/21</span>
  # date => "2008/12/21"
  process ".date", date => 'TEXT';

  # <div class="body"><a href="">foo</a></div>
  # link => URI->new("")
  process ".body > a", link => '@href';

  # <div class="body"><!-- HTML Comment here --><a href="">foo</a></div>
  # comment => " HTML Comment here "
  # NOTES: A comment nodes are accessed when installed
  # the HTML::TreeBuilder::XPath (version >= 0.14) and/or
  # the HTML::TreeBuilder::LibXML (version >= 0.13)
  process "//div[contains(@class, 'body')]/comment()", comment => 'TEXT';

  # <div class="body"><a href="">foo</a></div>
  # link => URI->new(""), text => "foo"
  process ".body > a", link => '@href', text => 'TEXT';

  # <ul><li>foo</li><li>bar</li></ul>
  # list => [ "foo", "bar" ]
  process "li", "list[]" => "TEXT";

  # <ul><li id="1">foo</li><li id="2">bar</li></ul>
  # list => [ { id => "1", text => "foo" }, { id => "2", text => "bar" } ];
  process "li", "list[]" => { id => '@id', text => "TEXT" };


There are many examples in the eg/ dir packaged in this distribution. It is recommended to look through these.






Tatsuhiko Miyagawa <>


This library is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself.