Slides: Scraping the Web with Python for Beginners

Here are the slides I made for a beginner workshop on getting started fetching data off of your favorite website with Python. Web scraping is a nice way to get more familiar with Python and HTML, since it lends itself to small, fun, self-contained projects.

I put together the workshop for the 2014 HackOverflow event, a hackathon organized by the Stanford Women in Computer Science group. Loosely, the theme was "using data to make applications." The workshop was part of a series introducing people to different topics, with the idea that the students might continue to explore the topic on their own afterwards.

I particularly enjoyed talking about web scraping due to a project I had made a few years before. I wanted to have Chrome automatically open the guitar chords for whatever song was playing in iTunes, since it was awkward to type while holding a guitar. It was neat to realize that with some googling and fiddling around, I could write a short script in Python to do it. Sadly, I don't think the resulting code from that project survived the changes to the different services over time.