Anirudh Ganesh Anirudh Ganesh - 3 months ago 28
Python Question

Extracting plain text from HTML using Python

I'm trying to extract plain text from a website using python. My code is something like this (a slightly modified version of what I found here):

import requests
import urllib
from bs4 import BeautifulSoup
url = "http://www.thelatinlibrary.com/vergil/aen1.shtml"
r = requests.get(url)
k = r.content
file = open('C:\\Users\\Anirudh\\Desktop\\NEW2.txt','w')
soup = BeautifulSoup(k)
for script in soup(["Script","Style"]):
script.exctract()
text = soup.get_text
file.write(repr(text))


This doesn't seem to work. I'm guessing that
beautifulsoup
doesn't accept
r.content
. What can I do to fix this?

This is the error -

UserWarning: No parser was explicitly specified, so I'm using the best available HTML parser for this system ("html.parser"). This usually isn't a problem, but if you run this code on another system, or in a different virtual environment, it may use a different parser and behave differently.

The code that caused this warning is on line 8 of the file C:/Users/Anirudh/PycharmProjects/untitled/test/__init__.py. To get rid of this warning, change code that looks like this:

BeautifulSoup([your markup])

to this:

BeautifulSoup([your markup], "html.parser")

markup_type=markup_type))
Traceback (most recent call last):
File "C:/Users/Anirudh/PycharmProjects/untitled/test/__init__.py", line 12, in <module>
file.write(repr(text))
File "C:\Python34\lib\encodings\cp1252.py", line 19, in encode
return codecs.charmap_encode(input,self.errors,encoding_table)[0]
UnicodeEncodeError: 'charmap' codec can't encode character '\x97' in position 2130: character maps to <undefined>

Process finished with exit code 1

Answer

The "error" is a warning, and is of no consequence. Quieten it with soup = BeautifulSoup(k, 'html.parser')

There seems to be a typo script.exctract() The word extract is spelt incorrectly.

The actual error seems to be that the content is a bytestring, but you are writing in text mode. The source contains an em dash. Handling this character is the problem.

You can encode with soup.encode("utf-8"). This means hardcoding the encoding into your script (which is bad). Or try using binary mode for the file open(..., 'wb'), or converting the content to a string before passing it to Beautiful Soup, using the correct encoding for that file, with k = str(r.content,"utf-8").