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# BeautifulSoup and Problem Tables

 P: n/a Hi I would appreciate some help. I am trying to learn Python and want to use BeautifulSoup to pull some data from tables. I was really psyched earlier tonight when I discovered that I could do this from BeautifulSoup import BeautifulSoup bst=file(r"c:\bstest.htm").read() soup=BeautifulSoup(bst) rows=soup.findAll('tr') len(rows) a=len(rows[0].findAll('td')) b=len(rows[1].findAll('td')) c=len(rows[2].findAll('td')) d=len(rows[3].findAll('td')) e=len(rows[4].findAll('td')) f=len(rows[5].findAll('td')) g=len(rows[6].findAll('td')) h=len(rows[8].findAll('td')) i=len(rows[9].findAll('td')) j=len(rows[10].findAll('td')) k=rows[1].findAll('td')[1].contents[0] So here I am chortling to myself thinking this is too easy. I know that the data columns are in rows[0] and so I can learn some more python to figure out how to create tuples so I can lable each data item using the row and column headings plucked from the contents. However, I discovered that my tables have inconsistent numbers of rows. Even though the tables look pretty. It might be that the column heading for the third column is "Apples" but the value for "Apples" in the fourth row is not in the third position in the row but the fourth. Now I am reluctant to make any assumptions because the tables were created inconsistently. What I mean is that in some tables if there is no value for a row/column intersection then there is a blank line, in other tables if there is no value for a row/column intersection then the length of k (as above) is 0. I have been Googling for some insight into this and I have not been successful finding anything. I would really appreciate any suggestions or some direction about how to better describe the problem. Sep 21 '08 #1