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Pete
06-06-2012, 10:06 PM
Hi,

I'm a software developer and was handed a website design (as a photoshop file) and access to dsSearchAgent and told I could make the website look the way they want using dsSearchAgent. Maybe I'm going crazy but it looks like the only thing I can do is display the map and basically specify various filters. This is fine for some of our links where we want exactly this behavior.

Another thing I need to be able to do is something like get the top 5 most expensive listings for a given area and basically display a photo of them along with a bit of information and link to a page that gives details about it. Kind of like a "showcase" page and I would like to have different ones for different areas.

Do you guys offer either:

A web service API
XML feed


My last concern is around the "Quick Search" module. It doesn't look like it's very customizable and the output is a table (I thought we stopped using tables for non tabular data)? The price min and max are just textboxes so my user can look for a max price of "hamburger" if they want. Can I create my own Quick Search form or at the very least convert those textboxes into selects so I can specify values and have it dropdown.

Daveed
06-08-2012, 05:21 PM
Hi Pete,

dsSearchAgent itself is customizable in the sense that you can change the color scheme and choose what Options to include in the Search itself which would be the Options that would allow your Users to alter the Results, but not much else past that. When you're embedding dsSearchAgent, it's really just Script Code that you're embedding onto whatever page you want on your Website.

We do have Modules, more specifically, a Slider Module that links into any Custom Link that you have created in your Control Panel (that Custom Link can be built in a such a way that it shows specific Listings in a particular area within a certain price range) and in that Slider it would display bits of information about each Listings with a cover photo and if a User clicks on that Listing then it redirects them to that Listing on your Search Page, so that's also a possibility.

Also, the Quick Search module is designed to be really as a plug-and-play module, so there is limited functionality with that as well. However, if you contact Support directly either by phone or Email, they can Email you with an API that would provide you the capability to build your own Quick Search. One thing with that though, is that if you decide to do that, then it becomes custom work you're doing on your end so Support wouldn't be able to provide Support for that, but it is an Option for you.

I hope this helps and it hope this all makes sense. :)

Mike McGee
06-08-2012, 06:44 PM
You also asked about XML feeds. You can make your own Custom Links with the parameters of your choosing.
Control Panel ==> IDX Products ==> Links
Once saved, every Custom Link has it's own RSS feed.

Pete
06-08-2012, 07:58 PM
Thanks for the response guys. I definitely need more flexibility than what is offered here. Already thought of the RSS route but the feed isn't very good. It might be for an RSS reader but not for what I need it to do.

I did more research today and what I'm really looking for is something like direct access to the MLS using RETS, which I believe is how diversesolutions gets its data from the various MLS'. I inquired with the MLS we are using and they can provide access, for a fee. No IDX providers seem to provide any kind of web service to easily expose the data. Apparently no one wants us to build our own search form to capture parameters and send those to your server which can then return XML or JSON.

So right now the RETS thing is sitting on the back burner as our last option and I'm using another provider who sends the HTML for their widgets over to us but their HTML is much easier for me to parse at the server and extract the data we want.

Mike McGee
06-09-2012, 07:03 AM
You got me curious now ... please come back and post a link to your project when it's done!

Daveed
06-13-2012, 02:53 PM
Thanks for the response guys. I definitely need more flexibility than what is offered here. Already thought of the RSS route but the feed isn't very good. It might be for an RSS reader but not for what I need it to do.

I did more research today and what I'm really looking for is something like direct access to the MLS using RETS, which I believe is how diversesolutions gets its data from the various MLS'. I inquired with the MLS we are using and they can provide access, for a fee. No IDX providers seem to provide any kind of web service to easily expose the data. Apparently no one wants us to build our own search form to capture parameters and send those to your server which can then return XML or JSON.

So right now the RETS thing is sitting on the back burner as our last option and I'm using another provider who sends the HTML for their widgets over to us but their HTML is much easier for me to parse at the server and extract the data we want.

A lot of MLS' are really picky with who they release their Data to. There are some that also provide their Data in a RETS format and others that provide it in a FTP format, but regulations are so strict for them that you must actually show their Data in a certain way with certain restrictions for them to even allow you to access their Data.

That's kind of why it's so hard for us to get certain requests processed, because we actually have to go to the MLS to see if they'll allow us to do it or not and a lot of times they say 'no'. But I see what you're trying to do and it does sound very interesting and it sounds like it could be very robust as well. I would also like to see if the finished result. :)