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Perl: Count Number of Links On a Page

This perl script counts the number of links on a page. For a list of webpages, it also calculates the average number of links per page.

It is rather simple. It fetches a web page and parses it for links, counting them as it goes.

I wrote it for my own amusement. When I was first creating web pages, you kept the pages simple. The rule-of-thumb was to keep the choices a user had to make under seven. Put simply, we tried to limit the number of links on a page, not neccesarily to just seven, because you would have navigation links. However, we attempted to keep it simple to navigate and actually find something on the page.

The major web sites have gotten pretty crazy with how much crap they have crammed onto their pages. So, I wrote a script to count how many links the major sites have on their homepages. I provides interesting comparisons.

Results were generated on Dec-06,1998

URL# of Links
http://www.etrade.com/ 42
http://www.yahoo.com/ 135
http://www.excite.com/ 158
http://www.lycos.com/ 118
http://www.aol.com/ 128
http://www.zdnet.com/ 197
http://www.cnet.com/ 114
http://www.altavista.com/ 63
http://www.netscape.com/ 138
http://www.microsoft.com/ 58
http://www.apple.com/ 43
http://www.cnn.com/ 232
http://www.geocities.com/ 68
http://www.theglobe.com/ 103
http://www.scripting.com/ 95
http://espn.sportszone.com/ 94
http://www.sportsline.com/ 99
Average Links per Page 110.88

I wrote the script using Perl for Win32 and the Win32::Internet module, which is a module which allows you to fetch URLs using HTTP, FTP and GOPHER. Download and info on the Win32::Internet module

View linkCount.pl Script Source

Related Links:

Perl Networking FAQ

Perl for Win32

dada's perl lab - Win32 Modules


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