Monday, 11 March 2019

Website archiving - Watchman's commercial release

[NB since version 2.1.0, we have had to make a slight change to the name, its full title is now Website Watchman.]

It has been a (deliberately) long road but Watchman for Mac now has its first commercial release.
This product does such a cool job that I've long believed that it could be as important to us as Integrity and Scrutiny. So I've been afraid to rush things. Version zero was officially beta, and a useful time for discovering shortcomings and improving the functionality. Version one was free. Downloads were healthy and feedback slim, which I take as a good sign. Finally it's now released with a trial period and reasonable introductory price tag. Users of version one are welcome to continue to use it, but it obviously won't get updates.

So what does it do? In a few words. "Monitor and archive a website".

There are apps that monitor a url and alert you to changes. There are apps that scan an entire website and archive it.

Watchman can scan a single page, part of a website or a whole website. It can do this on schedule - hourly, daily, weekly, monthly. It can alert you to changes. It builds a web archive which you can view (using Watchman itself or the free 'WebArchive Viewer' which is included in the dmg). You can browse the urls that it has scanned, and for each, view how that page looked on a particular day.

We're not talking about screenshots but a 'living' copy of the page. Watchman looks for and archives changes in every file, html, css, js and other linked files such as pdfs.  You can obviously export that page as a screenshot or a collection of the files making up that page, as they stood on that date.

A 'must have' for every website owner?

Try Watchman for free / buy at the introductory price.

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