I would love to be writing a thorough review of Yahoo! Pipes right now. Unfortunately, when I try to visit the site I only get this error message:
However, based on Jeremy Zawodny’s description, I have to say this sounds like one of the coolest ideas ever to hit the web. Essentially, Pipes is a way to make intelligent and automated mashups of data from a variety of web-based sources, and of course RSS is the key to that. Based off of what I’ve read, I’m not convinced that it does anything I couldn’t do with a little bit of custom Python code, but what it does do is provide an easy interface to create and manage such a mashup, and then hosts that creation so that I can access it from any of my other applications. Obviously, I can’t speak much more about it, or even evaluate how useful this is until I’ve played with it, so I’ll withhold from doing any sort of in depth analysis until I get to use it myself.
Hopefully, Yahoo’s pipes will be cleaned out soon so I can give it a try.
UPDATE: Yes, I’m aware of Dapper and DabbleDB. Those look interesting too, although DabbleDB is not free (it does offer a free trial). I’m a cheap bastard though, so I’ll probably focus on doing a side by side comparison of Dapper and Yahoo Pipes in the near future.
UPDATE: Pipes is back up and I’m having great fun playing about with it. I’ll have a review up after I’ve worked with it for a few days, and possibly after I’ve compared it to Dapper. I will say this though, for some reason I’m having some trouble getting it to correctly sort RSS feed items by pubDate. I’m sure it is something obvious I’m missing, but the Sort Operator just doesn’t seem to be working like it should. Oh well, more later.