Friday, October 18, 2002

Spidering tip. If you want to automatically download stock quotes, Yahoo makes it easy to get them in a spreadsheet-ready format. Just use the URL:^DJI&f=sl1d1t1

This gets General Motors, IBM, Microsoft, and the Dow Jones average. The f=sl1d1t1 is a format code for getting the symbol, last trade, date, and time. Here are the other codes:

f = format
s = symbol
l1 = last trade
d1 = date
t1 = time
c1 = change
o = open
h = high
g = low
v = volume

The data comes in Comma-Separated-Values (.CSV) format that all the spreadsheet programs recognize. You can also set up a portfolio online, but the above method is more easily automated.

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