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PR appointment date availability website

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livecat
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PR appointment date availability website

Postby livecat » Wed, 20 Aug 2014 12:51 am

Hi,

I built this website that shows up the next available date for PR appointment.

http://ffh.cloudapp.net/

There is also an option to get notified. Just key in your email address, a confirmation mail will be sent to you. Once you confirm, you will start getting updates whenever an appointment slot opens up.

To stop getting notifications, you can always unsubscribe from the mail itself.

Please note that the slots get booked *very* quickly. So, make sure you book yours as soon as you get the notification.

My story :
I am a programmer.I wanted to book the PR appointment some time back. But , the next available slots were 6 months away. My friends suggested me to keep checking the site once in a while. After a while I got fed up for 2 reasons :
1. Checking the site frequently was tedious.
2. The PR appointment site user experience made it even worse as you had to navigate through each month to find out available slots.

I decided to write this program to do the dog work for me. The program basically would basically open up the PR appointment page and look for available dates through each month and report if any. I just extended it a bit by configuring a mailer service to send emails when dates are available.

Luckily , I got an earlier appointment date while I was debugging the program.

Give it a try if you want to book an appointment.
Hope this helps.

-N

curiousgeorge
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Postby curiousgeorge » Wed, 20 Aug 2014 7:44 am

Wow that's neat! I know people have been commenting here on how long it takes to get an appointment.

Can you do it for the Citizenship appointments too? :D

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JR8
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Postby JR8 » Wed, 20 Aug 2014 10:37 am

Niiiiice and what a clever idea!

8-)


p.s. Oh, and p.s., welcome to the forum!

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Postby nakatago » Wed, 20 Aug 2014 1:53 pm

No privacy statement? How can users be assured that it's not just email harvesting website?

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Wd40
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Postby Wd40 » Wed, 20 Aug 2014 2:27 pm

But the PR website makes you enter your FIN Number inorder to get to the page where you can see the calendar, how does your program bypass that?

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Postby livecat » Wed, 20 Aug 2014 2:39 pm

@curiousgeorge : Thanks. I will look into that soon.

@JR8 : Cheers !

@nakatago : At work right now. I will post the privacy policy page by tonight. Sorry about that.

@Wd40 : I use mine. At the end of the day, all that matters is the available date and it should be the same for everyone. ( atleast I hope so )

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Postby Wd40 » Wed, 20 Aug 2014 2:57 pm

livecat wrote:
@Wd40 : I use mine. At the end of the day, all that matters is the available date and it should be the same for everyone. ( atleast I hope so )


Yes, but becareful, the ICA officials may look at this as an abuse, when they see your FIN hitting their server ever so often and eating up their bandwidth.

Maybe there is a reason why they want people to enter their FINs before they can see the calendar. In your quest to help others you may irate the ICA officials. I am not sure, but read their terms and conditions and I am sure, there will be something in there to prevent people from crawling their website.
Last edited by Wd40 on Wed, 20 Aug 2014 3:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

bluetopinkorblue
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Postby bluetopinkorblue » Wed, 20 Aug 2014 2:58 pm

you should be given a PR directly for that crafty work! i would if i were part of the government. this is the sort of talent thats missing in singapore. we like to queue without knowing what lies at the end of the queue rather the beginning of the queue!!!

livecat wrote:@curiousgeorge : Thanks. I will look into that soon.

@JR8 : Cheers !

@nakatago : At work right now. I will post the privacy policy page by tonight. Sorry about that.

@Wd40 : I use mine. At the end of the day, all that matters is the available date and it should be the same for everyone. ( atleast I hope so )

fsx
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Postby fsx » Wed, 20 Aug 2014 3:00 pm

Thanks a lot livecat.

I encountered a potential problem with it though, this morning at 9.00am exactly, I received what seemed to be a whole bunch of false positives in my inbox. I went to look immediately of course, but no openings showed up. Could it have something to do with a daily reset on their side or something?

Either way thanks for sharing, and at exactly the right time for me to boot...uncanny :D

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Postby livecat » Wed, 20 Aug 2014 3:47 pm

@Wd40 : Thanks for the valuable advice. I am new to all these legal stuff. I found the e-Appointment terms and conditions @ https://eappointment.ica.gov.sg/ibook/jsp/base/T&C.jsp
. Anyway, I am willing to shutdown this service down immediately provided it is violating any condition. From what I read, I don't see any point that I am abusing ( atleast directly) . Maybe, I am wrong. Your thoughts ?

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Wd40
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Postby Wd40 » Wed, 20 Aug 2014 5:37 pm

I am also no familiar with legal matters :)
But this page has more general terms and conditions:
http://www.ica.gov.sg/page.aspx?pageid=346

livecat
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Glad to help some of you out there

Postby livecat » Fri, 22 Aug 2014 10:15 pm

Looks like some people did sign-up for the service and manage to get some appointment dates. Happy to help.

"Thanks, I found it incredibly useful! I thought I would need to wait until February for an appointment, but your service allowed me to obtain an appointment for next week. Really appreciated!!" - anonymous

I will keep this service up for a couple of days and shut it down. I don't want to get into any legal trouble after all.

20 subscribers.
10 of them unsubscribed - (I presume they got their appointment and wanted to stop the 5+ notifications emails per day)

Well, moderately successful pet project I would say :)
Cheers.

-L

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JR8
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Postby JR8 » Fri, 22 Aug 2014 10:18 pm

Moderately close to getting a knock on your door at 11pm, I'd say.

:)

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Postby Strong Eagle » Fri, 22 Aug 2014 10:59 pm

I'm not seeing a real issue here. It is non-commercial usage. ICA grants the right to download data for non-commercial use. I see nothing that would prohibit a friend helping a friend by using their own FIN number to look up availability dates/times, and then inform them.

In fact, this application is something ICA ought to incorporate into their own website.

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Wd40
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Postby Wd40 » Sat, 23 Aug 2014 3:03 pm

7. Except as otherwise provided, the Contents of this website shall not be reproduced, republished, uploaded, posted, transmitted or otherwise distributed in any way, without the prior written permission of ICA.

8. You may use, hyperlink, copy and distribute the contents found on this website solely for personal, internal, non-commercial, informational purposes only. You may download one copy of any information provided in this website onto a single computer for your own personal non-commercial use provided that you keep intact all accompanying copyright and other proprietary notices. You may not display, distribute or otherwise use any of the content found on this website for any commercial purpose unless you receive specific written consent from ICA.


There is enough in the above 2 lines, that if I were the OP, the least that I would do is take permission from ICA.

Also, helping one person to use your FIN is one thing, but its totally different to openly let anyone come and use his FIN to bypass the initial step that ICA enforces before anyone can see the availability. Like I said, earlier, there is a good reason why ICA wants the FIN number before people can see the availability.


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