Iopus 7 record problem

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Posts: 174
Joined: Fri Dec 23, 2005 4:14 pm

Iopus 7 record problem

Post by mknoll1 » Wed Nov 03, 2010 4:40 pm

I have been a long time user of Iopus and have been testing Iopus 7 (7.05 Build 0969 IE8 and Windows XP) and have a serious problem with it. I recorded the following commands:

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TAG POS=1 TYPE=IMG FORM=NAME:reportType ATTR=SRC:https://SOMESITE/6/248/3583/000/SOMESTUFF/tir/assets/b*
TAG POS=2 TYPE=IMG FORM=NAME:reportType ATTR=SRC:https://SOMESITE/6/248/3583/000/SOMESTUFF/tir/assets/b*

On the page there are 2 very similar buttons that have different alt text as shown by this command recorded in Iopus 6 (using the automatic record mode)

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TAG POS=1 TYPE=IMG ATTR=ALT:Customize<SP>Selected<SP>Report    
From past experience differentiating between 2 buttons with TAG POS=X is not ideal because buttons can and will move around the screen but still retain the same value for other attributes. If the site in question flipped the buttons from A B to B A then my script will now die for no obvious reason. Furthermore the SRC attribute is probably the worst possible default choice because it relies on the source of the image which isn't guaranteed to remain constant. In the above example is SOMESITE moves to SOMESITE2 (perhaps a mirror of SOMESITE) then my script is toast. In addition if one image comes from SOMESITE2 and the other comes from SOMESITE then the TAG POS=X command flops because they now are considered different because the SRC value is not the same. I know that I can make use of the wildcard for the URL embedded in the SRC command but taken all together this doesn't seem like a robust solution.

I can record it with expert mode but that yields this

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TAG POS=1 TYPE=IMG FORM=NAME:reportType ATTR=BORDER:0&&ALT:Customize<SP>Selected<SP>Report&&SRC:https://SOMESITE/6/248/3583/000/SOMESTUFF/tir/assets/b*
I can work with this but it takes a lot more work because I have to manually touch each recorded command and introduces a lot more places for me to make a syntactical mistake. Gone are the record modes that allowed me to pick something in between Automatic and full command. Choosing between link name and URL record commands was a valuable strategy to me that made things much easier.

Lots of other things seem nicer in Iopus 7 but this specific problem would represent a blocker to me upgrading. Is this behavior what I should expect going forward? Are there plans to add back in the choice of record types?
Marcia, Tech Support
Posts: 1095
Joined: Thu Jan 29, 2009 1:10 pm

Re: Iopus 7 record problem

Post by Marcia, Tech Support » Mon Nov 08, 2010 8:00 am


Thank you for your report.

iMacros 7 was designed to be as similar to iMacros for Firefox as possible. iMacros for Firefox is widely spread, with about 30000 weekly downloads, and since our iMacros for Firefox users have been satisfied about the click mode options included in the add-on, we thought that it was a good idea to have the same options in iMacros 7.

Nevertheless, if you feel that this is an important feature which is missing in iMacros 7, I can add it to the "feature wish list".

Posts: 174
Joined: Fri Dec 23, 2005 4:14 pm

Re: Iopus 7 record problem

Post by mknoll1 » Tue Nov 09, 2010 2:24 pm

I just feel very strongly that using the source of an image when recording a command is a very bad option because it is not guaranteed or even expected to remain constant. I understand that there are situations where this is the only way possible to make it work but this isn't one of them. Even if you can't give me the options that I had before about how the click is recorded, simply fixing the algorithm that chooses the best command to record for a given click to prioritize the attributes other than image source would probably be enough. If this click recorded the alt text instead of image source I wouldn't have posted.

Perhaps an even easier strategy would be to prioritize any "TAG POS=X REST OF LINE" command to have the lowest possible X value. That would mean that if TAG POS=2 were required for img source then it would be lower priority than TAG POS=1 for the alt text command. This may not actually be how you select the tag commands but if it is then I think this might be a spot for improvement.
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Tech Support
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Joined: Tue Sep 20, 2005 7:25 pm

Re: Iopus 7 record problem

Post by Tech Support » Wed Nov 10, 2010 4:35 pm


Do you have some (specific) public website(s) for us to test this? We would use it to test/fine-tune the automatic TAG generation.

In addition to the automatic selection of the "best" possible command, both, iMacros for Firefox and iMacros 7 have the HTML clickmode: With this expert mode iMacros generates all command with all possible attributes, and you can then select the ones you like to use (i. e. delete the ones that you think will not remain constant). Our idea is that this command is a good replacement for the old "use link" / "use text" options. But please let me know if you feel otherwise.

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