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Subject: TangaMon - A program to continually monitor Tanga.com rss

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Les Harris
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I created a little program for myself, much like Wootalyzer for Woot.com, but for Tanga. My gaming friends all found it useful so I applied a liberal dollop of polish and am presenting it here for anyone who also might find it useful.



It sits in your system tray and every 15 minutes it polls the Tanga.com site and checks if there is a new deal. If there is, a notification popup will unobtrusively inform you. The program also downloads the product's description, features, and any images provided so you can see and read about the product without opening a web browser. If you simply have to have it (I bought the Tongiaki game today... couldn't resist for 7 bucks... blush ) you can just click Buy and it'll take you to the order page.

Its only for Windows at the moment and requires .NET 2.0 to run. If there is interest a port to Mono so it can run on Linux and Mac OS X is possible.

Screen shots and a more thorough feature 'tour' are at the website linked below.

Les

Website: http://grace.evergreen.edu/~harher07/tangamon/
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Sam DiRocco
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I would be interested in a Mac OS X version. The program looks great and is now on my Macbook!!
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Very cool!
 
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Adam Alleman
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Mac OS interest here. Here's a pre-tip. Thanks.
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Sean Norville
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Easy OS X Solution with Safari
Bookmark Tanga's RSS feed in Safari.

I used to use the phone notice back when Tanga was doing the good old deal a day thing, but I couldn't take it when it went Tangathon. Now I simply bookmarked their RSS feed onto my bookmark bar and I just glance at the "new entry number" whenever I open Safari to know if anything new is up. It is easy, requires no extra software, and is integrated right into your browser.

Note, you can do likewise in Firefox, you just don't see a number when something new comes up. You can click it to see if there are any new posts.
 
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orpheanjmp wrote:


Its only for Windows at the moment and requires .NET 2.0 to run.


I'm not familiar with what that is. Is it part of a specific version of Windows?

Any info would be appreciated!

Scott
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Les Harris
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manowarplayer wrote:
orpheanjmp wrote:


Its only for Windows at the moment and requires .NET 2.0 to run.


I'm not familiar with what that is. Is it part of a specific version of Windows?

Any info would be appreciated!

Scott


Hi Scott,

Sorry to be unclear! .NET is a framework from Microsoft for developing applications. As far as you're concerned its just something that needs to be installed, you may already have it even.

TangaMon will work on any version of windows that .NET supports (98 and above).

The installer checks for the presence of .NET and will direct you to the download site if you need it, and if you already have it it will just install itself.

Hope that clears things up!

Les
 
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James Hébert
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Les,

This is cool! Thank you! I find the great deals at Tanga very frustrating, mainly because I never know in time! I've tried Tangamon out for a day now and have one feedback note, and a couple of questions.

Twice now I have returned from a day at work and found the monitor has crashed. When I mouseover the icon in the system tray it blinks out of existence (as if something killed the process). Is there anything I can do/try to help figure out why? Since it's been running a good 8+ hours by that time, I've no idea when it went down.

Can I ask a few questions... (note: I realize now these are mainly feature requests, which you are entirely welcome to ignore and stop at the "Thank you!" above).

Would you consider...
...the notification window for a new item remain "up" until clicked to go away? So if I wander away, then return, it's still there.
... a shortcut/button to jump to BGG, or
... a shortcut to jump to the BGG page for that game (if it's a game)?

Great work, and thanks again.

James
 
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Les Harris
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Hi James!

jhebert wrote:

This is cool! Thank you!


Thank you for saying so and for trying it out!


jhebert wrote:
Twice now I have returned from a day at work and found the monitor has crashed. When I mouseover the icon in the system tray it blinks out of existence (as if something killed the process). Is there anything I can do/try to help figure out why? Since it's been running a good 8+ hours by that time, I've no idea when it went down.


Hrm. Well looks like you found a bug of some sort. I'll leave TangaMon running on my machine in the debugger until it crashes for me. If a window ever pops up saying something like 'TangaMon crashed etc' there should be a "Details" button in that window and if you send me the details contained therein to orpheanjmp@gmail.com (its just a big text box) I can at least see where it crashed for you.

We'll get this squashed as soon as I know what's going on!

jhebert wrote:

...the notification window for a new item remain "up" until clicked to go away? So if I wander away, then return, it's still there.


Absolutely! I will put this into the preferences window so people can choose which behavior they prefer.

jhebert wrote:
... a shortcut/button to jump to BGG,


Easily done.

jhebert wrote:
... a shortcut to jump to the BGG page for that game (if it's a game)?


This is problematic because Tanga for whatever reason doesn't make it very clear via the HTML on their deals page what the name of the product is so TangaMon makes an educated guess based on where the title of the product usually is. Even when the name of the product is in the part where TangaMon thinks it is (which is most of the time), often times the Tanga folks have it buried in a sentence of some sort. And sadly, TangaMon does not speak english so it's hard for it to figure out which part of the text is the actual title.

What I can do is provide a way for tangamon to use BGGs search and then it will search for what TangaMon thinks the name of the deal is on BGG and send you to the results page in your browser.

Sorry I can't make this a better solution for the moment :/

Les
 
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Les Harris
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Just a quick update,

My debug build of TangaMon now has a button titled 'Search on BGG' which will search for the Title of the deal on BGG. If the deal is a game, this will very likely take you right to the games page, or at the least a list of search results. If the deal is not a game, you're on your own laugh

Also added a preference that will keep the notification panel open until manually closed, this is off by default (as are all preferences) and the behavior can be enabled by turning it on in the preferences window.

I'm going to hold off on releasing this until this crashing bug James came across is fixed. This might take a day or two since its entirely dependent on when Tanga updates their site. I'm leaving my tangamon running in the debugger so when whatever it is happens I'll know exactly what's going on.

Thanks for the interest everybody.

Les
 
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Les Harris
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Another quick update,

I've found the cause of the crash and have implemented a potential solution. My TangaMon is running it right now and depending on a) the solution works, and b) tanga updates relatively soon I will push out the new release with the new features and the bugfix today.

If the solution doesn't work then it will be at least another day. Soon though!

Les
 
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Les Harris
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I forgot to mention in the previous post,

I've started porting TangaMon to Mono. I don't have access to a computer running OS X but when I get to that point if anyone would like to be a tester for me please email me.

I can test under linux with no problem.

Thanks,
Les
 
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Hey Les, thank you for your considerate replies and action. I'll get it updated on my system immediately and let you know!

Great idea to use search ... by the way. meeple

I have a friend who's a Mac user. I'll see if he's under OS X.

James
 
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Any news on an update? Since Tanga's latest redesign, TangaMon now crashes on startup every time.
 
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jhebert wrote:
I find the great deals at Tanga very frustrating, mainly because I never know in time!

You do realize this tool only polls tanga every 15 minutes so you could in theory be 15 minutes late for the really hot tanga deals now (though they haven't had any really hot ones in a while it seems).

The tanga emails however, if you subscribe, are sent it seems as soon as the current deal is sold out, so about 2 minutes before the next one fokls are allowed to actually purchase. Depending on how often your mail client polls for new mail, if you are at the computer anyway, the emails may be a better option.
 
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TangaMon, I choose you!
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JeffyJeff wrote:
jhebert wrote:
I find the great deals at Tanga very frustrating, mainly because I never know in time!

You do realize this tool only polls tanga every 15 minutes so you could in theory be 15 minutes late for the really hot tanga deals now (though they haven't had any really hot ones in a while it seems).


I thought this too. I don't program, so I don't know if this would be hard, but it might be nice if people could set how often it polls tanga, so that those concerned about missing fast sellers could check more frequently.

Very handy tool though, I'd imagine especially for those that have adblock
 
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Maybe the wrong forum to ask, and maybe I can search for the answer myself but still… what is this Tanga thing about? Some sort of finders-keepers hot deals thing where the ads only are there in an hour or what? I took a quick look at Tanga.com but couldn't figure out what it's all about.
 
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Simon, see www.tanga.com

It is USA only though...
 
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Or you could just download Wootalyzer at www.wootalyzer.com

The latest build allows you to choose from a list of various deal a day sites and Tanga is one of them. Last time I checked, it worked excellent and you get the added benefit of the program being able to check other sites out besides Tanga. It's what I rely on in addition to the SMS alerts you can subscribe to at Tanga. (text message and email)
 
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I am pleased to here the next version of TangaMon may be Linux-compatible. Perhaps Wootalyzer will be too, one day ... This sounds like something that would be a fairly straightforward Firefox extension - anyone game to try?
 
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