Jikan News & Updates – Mid-2018

Okay, this news is almost a month old. Here goes.


Already 5 months into 2018 and I’ve already exciting news regarding Jikan. I wrote a post back in January – laying out the road map of Jikan for the current year. I had announced 4 more features that were to be done this year. I’ve completed 3 of them with User Related scraping to be done by the release of REST 2.3.

 

RELATED

 

Over the past year, Jikan has gained a huge traction, client and development wise. Here are the highlights of the past 6 months.

Jikan REST 2.2

With the release of REST 2.2, came many new features.

  1. More extended data for Anime and Manga (with the exception of reviews & recommendations – for now)
  2. Anime/Manga/People/Characters Search! This comes with advanced search filters and pagination support.
  3. Top Anime and Manga with advanced filters
  4. Season – To list the Anime airing this season and for other years/seasons.
  5. Schedule – Anime scheduling for the week for this season
  6. Meta – Experimental requests for getting usage stats for Jikan and most requested links by daily, weekly & monthly periods.

 

And some service changes.

  1. Jikan has moved domain to Jikan.moe. The previous (Jikan.me) domain has been discontinued.
  2. Jikan REST API is now being hosted in Tokyo (closer to MyAnimeList’s Tokyo server) by an awesome dude called Hibiki.

 

100% Jikan Open Source

That’s right. The entirety of Jikan has been open-sourced under MIT License. This includes the website, docs and REST API service.

This not only adds flexibility, but the code is easier to manage and deploy. There goes the days of patches having to wait till the next REST version. Now the RESTful services is updated as soon as a new JikanPHP version is out – this ofcourse will vary for major feature releases as I’ve to set up the controllers on the REST service.

 

Usage Stats

This is the Meta feature I mentioned.

 

It works by logging requests made in Redis and increasing the respective counters for that request. Here are some interesting usage links.

You can read more about the further usability.

 

Late 2018 Roadmap (REST 2.3)

So here’s a few stuff that will definitely be completed before the end of 2018. Perhaps in the upcoming months.

  • Top Characters/People
  • Anime/Manga Extended Data – Reviews & Recommendations
  • User Data – Profile, Watch History, Friends

 

Early 2019

This is given if the MyAnimeList’s new API hasn’t been publicly released yet or people haven’t started ditching Jikan.

  • JikanPHP (Core) – Rewrite. This will introduce JikanPHP 2.X.
    • Separation of the parser as an abstraction class for Requests & RegEx parsing
    • Faster Parsing – Rework Extended Requests.
  • Jikan REST 3.0 – Given the crazy amount of requests we’ve been gettings. The main problem is rate limiting from MyAnimeList since we’re making all these requests from one server, i.e one IP Address.
    • Rework Redis Database data caching
    • API Keys. Note: This won’t replace free, unmonitored GET requests. The current limit of 5,000 will be lowered down to encourage app/project developers to get an API key that will support higher rate limits.
    • Rework Extended Requests as separate API calls. This is a bottleneck right now as extended requests make 2 requests instead of one to merge the data for you into 1 request.
  • Relational data – Expand to other sites (maybe)
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Playing with Browser Extensions

So I had to test out the usability of my REST API and what’s a better way than developing an app that does it? Of course, being limited with app development  skills,  I turned to something more easier that I, atleast, have some skills in; Browser Addons/Extensions.

Now one thing I learned was that developing a  browser addons is mostly the same as making a web application. Except you need to have a manifest file and have it compiled by your browser into a proper extension. That’s pretty much it.

Enter;Anime Info

The reason why it’s such a generic name was because I had thought of the possibility of releasing it into the wild market, free to download and use. So the name would easily be search-able and would get SEO points. But the thing is it’s been about a month and Opera’s market takes almost forever to review an Addon and Chrome and Firefox have you make an initial payment to start putting addons/apps on their market, and I don’t have an card available at the moment so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.

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I don’t plan on updating the addon, it was merely for searching up Anime and viewing it just so I could get the gist of browser addon development and to see how my REST API worked with it. The conclusion was pretty nice.

The whole project is open-source and available on Github: https://github.com/irfan-dahir/anime-info

Designed with Material Design in mind and developed with speed in mind, it’s probably the only addon out there for its’ purpose. (No kidding, I couldn’t find anything remotely close). Sure, it can be updated to allow users to login and even update their Anime and Manga lists and even view and search Mangas – but again, nah.

Jikan API – Vision 2018 🎆 [Unofficial MyAnimeList API]

So it’s 2018 and Jikan is now 1 year old! MyAnimeList announce late 2017 that they’ll be working on fixing up their API but until then I’ll have Jikan running around. I have some plans for Jikan that need to be done, hopefully by mid-2018 or earlier, depending on college.

 

READ

 

There are some things I’m still interesting in scraping off of MAL, here’s the list.

 

User Profile

Taking an example of my own profile;

 

There’s a lot of data available per user profile. The best part here would be their favorite characters, people, anime, manga and basic stats. The hardest part to extract here would be the user based “About Me” which is highly customizable. So this, I might consider parsing since MAL’s HTML source is already terrible enough.

 

Top Anime/Manga/People/Characters

These pages give you access to a paginated list of anime/manga/people/characters ranked by their popularity/favoritism by the community from #1 to the last ranking available. Tis a gold mine entry.

 

Anime/Manga/Person/Character Search!

The official MAL API already has this feature but it only returns the first page of results! It only allows simple string queries and requires user authentication for the API call to work, which is what Jikan is meant to over come. This has been a requested feature, so I’ll most likely be working on a parser for this in the months to come.

 

 

Extended Data for Anime/Manga

This has been in the prospect of Jikan since the beginning, but I’ve held off any other extended parsing other than characters/staff and episodes until recently as I begun making scrapers for Pictures, Videos & News related to the item. This trend will continue as there are more pages that consist of interesting data regarding an anime or manga. Especially the reviews page since this has the best data for sentient analysis and averaging of any show or manga.

 

Will be focusing on these 4 for this year! It takes time to mine pure data since scraping HTML off MAL means a lot of weird and round-about ways of doing things!

DAY 5 – ‘Comments’ | DECEMBER WEB DESIGN CHALLENGE

I actually lost the challenge. Totally forgot to make a design on the 28th. This should’ve been Day 6, but ah well. In this case, what I’ll simply do is push it a day extra, so the challenge would end on the 3rd of Jan instead. I will continue the challenge.

So, this is a post/comment based component. Something you’d see on any social media. It does look a little similar to Facebook but that’s just your imagination. 😋

Demo | Download | In The Making Timelapse (Coming)

I can confidently say that with this one I’ve managed to combine the use of FlexBox and Grid and go up a level! 🧙‍♂️ It’s amazing how they both can work together.

Specification

DAY 4 – ‘Plans’ | DECEMBER WEB DESIGN CHALLENGE

I struck off the 24 hour limit as I’ve been insanely busy during the past 2 days. But I managed to complete this design before morning (6.30am) so I won’t be considering it a “next day” yet for the sake of not ruining my own challenge. 🤔

Demo | Download | In The Making Timelapse

 

This design, again, was done as fast as I could with little planning as I woke up at around 4.00am and begun at 4.30~. So it took me about an hour and half to complete this one.

I used FontAwesome 5 for the icons and picked out a gradient color from uigradients.com.

 

Specification

Colors used are:

  • Primary Gradient (#ff9966)
  • Secondary Gradient (#ff5e62)
  • White n’ Black

And as the last 2 designs, Open Sans was used for the type face.

DAY 3 – ‘Me’ | DECEMBER WEB DESIGN CHALLENGE

So this design was done in the most possibly messy way. I screwed up a lot given I was unavailable the whole day to work on anything, then sleepily designed something as simple as I could within 2 hours.

 

Demo | Download | In The Making Timelapse

 

Given I almost dozed off between coding, I messed up the file system and lost all source files at the end. Thankfully,  I had a tab open in the browser and saved it directly from there then as messily as I could, pushed it to the repo.

There’s nothing fancy, just a static design without any responsive or feedback details given the amount of time I had available.

 

I got the display picture from uifaces.com, it belongs to @AdhamDannaway.

 

There’s a little effect where the background is black and it fades in once the page has loaded completely. Obviously something broke since I made a static save from the browser and it’s now not working. Don’t really want to touch it either.

 

Specification

Colors used are simply black and white.

There is no responsivity given the amount of time I had but it shouldn’t do bad on devices since it’s grid-made and sticks to the center.

DAY 2 – ‘Display’ | DECEMBER WEB DESIGN CHALLENGE

Product modals aren’t really my strong point. This was a pretty good time to change that.

A clean, “pastel-feel”, “blue-ish” with slight touches of Material design brings light to “Display” – the refreshingly sleek product modal.

 

With today’s design, I managed to get a tighter grip on CSS Grids & some Flexbox. Indeed, it really makes things much easier once you’ve managed to comprehend the gist of it.

 

Demo | Download | In The Making Timelapse (Youtube)

 

The Apple Smart watch mockups were taken from Freepik. Respective used asset licenses are available here.

Specification

Colors used:

  • Good ol’ white (#fff)
  • Background (#94B4DD)
  • Primary Color (##779CF1)
  • Shades of Black

Font: Open Sans

 

And that conclude Day 2.