One of my weird hobbies is figuring out web tools I can manipulate from just changing something in the URL.

In my just ranted piece on Instagram I sought out a thing that would tell me when in time a certain date was that was like 247 weeks ago.

Research Maniacs had just the thing, as well as gazillion other nifty lookup tools. There is a number information tool, this link tells me everything about the number 13

http://researchmaniacs.com/Numbers/Number-13.html

Do I have to look up via a web form the info for the meaning of 49? Nope, just edit the URL

http://researchmaniacs.com/Numbers/Number-49.html

You might then see the same pattern for their Texting abbbreviation lookup tool:
http://researchmaniacs.com/TextLanguage/Definitions/What-does-LYMY-mean.html

Or Roman Numerals
http://researchmaniacs.com/Numbers/RomanNumerals/What-number-is-MMXV.html

This tells me at some point I could build some Javascript tools that could leverage their URL patterns.

Anyhow, I was curious what the limits of the Weeks Ago tool was.

I started plugging in big numbers, which generates 404 errors.

http://researchmaniacs.com/WhenWas/Weeks/When-Was-1000000-Weeks-Ago.html? Error

http://researchmaniacs.com/WhenWas/Weeks/When-Was-100000-Weeks-Ago.html? Error

http://researchmaniacs.com/WhenWas/Weeks/When-Was-10000-Weeks-Ago.html? Error

http://researchmaniacs.com/WhenWas/Weeks/When-Was-1000-Weeks-Ago.html? This works!

By zeroing in on both sides, I found the limit of the tool is 9999 weeks ago

http://researchmaniacs.com/WhenWas/Weeks/When-Was-9999-Weeks-Ago.html (which today means Monday August 9, 1824).

One might guess a limit of 5 digits? Maybe a database character limit? Who knows?

I find the same limit for days ago…

http://researchmaniacs.com/WhenWas/Days/When-Was-10000-Days-Ago.html? Error

http://researchmaniacs.com/WhenWas/Days/When-Was-9999-Days-Ago.html? Ok

and time…

That’s my hobby.


Top / Featured Image: Screenshot of Research Maniacs web tool for finding the date of a certain time in the past; in this case I found that 10,000 weeks ago was one week beyond it’s limit.

The post "Playing With Programmable URLs" was originally pulled from under moldy cheese at the back of the fridge at CogDogBlog (https://cogdogblog.com/2016/03/playing-with-programmable-urls/) on March 28, 2016.

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Playing With Programmable URLs by CogDogBlog is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 License.