Craigslist Power Searches with images using Google Reader and Yahoo Pipes

Posted by on Jul 20, 2011 in Blog

About

Searching for something on Craigslist is a gankfest. Once you pick a category or do a search, all you get is a list of titles with unhelpful descriptions like

*********CLICK HERE!!!!!*********

You then have to click on each title, one at a time, and hope it has what you’re looking for and not spam.

Trust me, there’s a better way… otherwise why waste my time blogging about it?

 

Let’s do this!

So the idea here is to explode the list of titles into a single scrollable window containing the body contents of every post and the images.

My example: searching for 2-bedroom apartments in the Boston area that include pictures and are less than $1,200/month.

 

What you need

A Google Reader account

 

Step 1

First, you need to settle on what you’re looking for. I’m looking for apartments in Boston, so I start a custom search here.

 

Step 2

Now I just copy that URL, click the “Add a Subscription” button in Google Reader and paste in the URL

 

But where are the images?

So Craigslist syndicates the entire posts but leaves out one of the most important things when deciding if your potential new apartment will accomodate your over-sized futon: the photos!

Thank this dude. He created a Yahoo Pipe that auto-magically combines the images with the entire posts of the RSS feed, and provides you with a new link to add to Google Reader.

 

Step 3

Grab your search RSS url from above and paste it in here:
http://pipes.yahoo.com/pipes/pipe.info?_id=YJYsrdrF3RG3_SGwbbsjiw

 

Step 4

Take the new URL and repeat Step 2, you know, the one about pasting it into Google Reader (Sorry, yeah repeat it. Next time skip it and go straight to Step 3 ’cause you’ll know better.)

 

Success!

Power Search with Images engaged. Go forth and tear it up. I’m gonna find me a bicycle.