Using the COPTR data feed
Accessing the COPTR data
- I'd like to take the data in COPTR and create a funky 3D spinny view that helps people navigate the data and find what they are looking for. Can I do this, and can I host it somewhere else?
- Yes, that would be excellent! The COPTR content is made available under a CC-BY-SA license but we ask that if possible you point your users back to this site if they have corrections or new tools to add.
Ways to access the COPTR data
We offer two main channels for accessing the data - the MediaWiki API, and XML dumps of the MediaWiki content.
The COPTR API
As COPTR is based on MediaWiki, you can access the COPTR content via the MediaWiki API. The Official MediaWiki API Documentation is a pretty good starting point, and the endpoint itself is fairly self-documenting. You can also use the API sandbox to experiment with the API. However, to help get you started, here are a couple of examples.
Machine-Readable Recent Changes
If you want access to information on what has changed recently, just like the RecentChanges page, but in a machine-readable form, you can construct a URL like this:
Breaking down those query parameters, we have:
|Perform a query action, rather than e.g. adding or editing a page.
|Perform a query on the 'recent changes' list (one of many lists available).
|Return the results in JSON format.
|Return up to 500 results at once (500 is the maximum per request, but there are other parameters for paging).
|Return only 'new page' events.
|For each event, return these fields (see the API docs for more detail).
So, for example, if you would rather receive XML, you can just modify the format parameter.
There is also a Category Members list you can query. For example:
- This query lists all the subcategories belonging to the Function category.
- This query lists the Page IDs and Title of all the pages belonging to the Fixity category.
Semantic API modules
COPTR runs the Semantic MediaWiki extension, which provides semantic API modules that can be used to query the COPTR data. For instance, the following URL uses the ask module to query for all tools that have function Rendering and content type Container, and retrieves the tools' purpose:
The following properties (some of which may be empty for some tools) can be queried
|A brief description of the tool's purpose
|Information about the tool's license
|Information about the cost of the tool
|A description of the platform(s) that the tool runs on
|The input format(s) that the tool supports
|The output format(s) that the tool supports
|The function(s) of the tool
|The tool's content type(s)
The Input and Output formats also have queryable properties
|The identifier of the file format in Wikidata
|File formats wiki ID
|The identifier of the file format in the File formats wiki
You can use the Semantic search interface to construct and test a query that can subsequently be used with the ask API module. For more information about the query syntax and more advanced query constructs - such as property chaining and inverse queries - please refer to the Semantic MediaWiki documentation on selecting pages and displaying information.
The COPTR Database Backup Dumps
We also make daily XML dumps available, for backup and re-use purposes. You can find them in the backup-dumps folder,