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Thread: How to send myself daily email?

  1. #1
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    Question How to send myself daily email?

    Hi,

    As a Muslim, I would like to read selected passages from my scripture daily. Those selected passages are all inside a .doc file. I just want to create a service for myself primarily, and later for other people who wish to join for those selected passages to be sent on a daily basis.
    These selected passages are already divided over 365 days. The only thing remaining is for me to find an easy and efficient way for an easy web utility that is going to send those passages on the corresponding day to all the people I have included in my contact list.
    I tried Mail Chimp but the problem is that you can only manually set an email campaign. I don't want to spend hours creating 365 different email campaigns here. I just want that app to take the contents from a file [date.doc] stored in a directory [selected passages] and just sent it like that.

    Could anybody please help me?
    Thanks
    The release of atom power has changed everything except our way of thinking...the solution to this problem lies in the heart of mankind. If only I had known, I should have become a watchmaker.
    Power Quotes, by Albert Einstein

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  3. #2
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    I'm not sure you can do this inside of a .doc file. You may have to copy/paste those passages into a database.

    But basically, what you'd want is some combination of server-side programming (PHP, ASP.net, etc.), a database (MySQL, MSSQL, even Access if what you're doing is small enough), and a task scheduler (Cron or Windows Task Scheduler would do the trick). You'd schedule your task to retrieve the passages and then email them to everyone.
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  4. #3
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    Hi,
    I did find something about sendEmail.exe in combination with Windows Task Scheduler. The problem with such an approach however is that I will still have to create 365 different task schedulers because the parameter for your filename is static. I can't input something like: "filename_X.doc" with x being a variable between 1 and 365 so that according the day it sends the appropriate file.
    I need something that is worked out already. I am not a programmer. What about batch files?


    Best Regards,

    I don't try to imagine a God; it suffices to stand in awe of the structure of the world, insofar as it allows our inadequate senses to appreciate it
    God Quotes, by Albert Einstein

  5. #4
    Senior Member Webzarus's Avatar
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    Nope... You'll either need to do as TheGame said... Or create 365 different task...

    me personally, is create a DB... Put each passage in its on record... Assign a date to each record.

    create a simple web page that will pull the record for the day... Use a sendmail script ... To call and send that page... Then create a Cron job to run daily call that page and send it...

    either way... A good bit of work ... But I'll tell you from experience... Just as soon as you manage to write a batch to find a specific place within the word doc, and get everything working ... MS will push out an update that will trash your script... Been there done that.

    going the DB route, you can create a field in the table for email addresses... Then if you add someone to your list ... Populate the BCC field with the email addresses... You can send out the same email to hundreds or thousands of people... And the mail server see's it as 1 email...

    of course to so it right... You'll have a form for someone to un-subscribe from the list by clicking a link in the email... And pushing a button... This will either remove their name from the DB... Or flag it somehow ... So they are not put in the list of names.
    Khalil786 likes this.

  6. #5
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    Thanks for the info!
    But it will require me to learn a whole new skill for which I currently have no time.
    I want to look at it though and see how practical it is for me to implement all of that, except I have no idea where to start.

    Also, I am baffled by the fact that there is no worked out solution online or wherever that I can just go for, whereas this is such a primitive automated feature that thousands of people must have required? For instance, how do they send out daily quotes to your email? It can't be that all those people are super experienced programmers that will write their own code on the fly. It can't be that they are so cruel to themselves that they create 1000 different tasks? Isn't there any alternative?
    I just spend 5 hours trying to figure out how blat.exe works, and I can't even get it to set up. It always gives me an error message.

    Also, your discouragement on using batch files for this purpose, is it only because of the danger of MS-updates for word or not? I mean, if I convert them to .txt files instead and find out how to write a batch file to retrieve the correct .txt file according to the day of the year (for instance, Day_32.txt would corrspond to February the First.) get it to copy it to a Email-Me directory, renaming it over there to a standard name, such as email_me.txt and then have a task scheduler that will use that name tag as a static parameter for sendmail or blat?

  7. #6
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    What you need to bear in mind is that, contrary to prevailing opinion, the talent pool of programmers that could even take something like that on is relatively small. WDF, for example, has almost 37,000 members. I can think of 6 people that you'd stand a 50/50 chance of getting a "yes" answer from if you asked them if they could build what you're looking for. There may be some others on here, but the vast majority would be in the "no" category since 1) it's an uncommon request (a good request, but an uncommon one) and 2) as you've noticed, there is no prebuilt solution since it is an uncommon request. It's just not something people ask for.

    I've personally built something similar whereby I had a task once a day that ran on my dev server to open up a web page in a browser window, process its contents, send emails as appropriate, and then close the browser window. But it wouldn't work in your particular case since it's customized for a specific industry, so I couldn't really give you the code to run to be able to do that.

    If you were going to rename those files, you'd actually be better off naming them 02_01.txt for February 1. Most programming languages recognize months and days within a month, but very few recognize days within a calendar year. Your method also doesn't take February 29 into account.
    Khalil786 likes this.
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  8. #7
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    Thank you so much for your honesty. I didn't realize it would be so difficult.

  9. #8
    Senior Member Webzarus's Avatar
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    Actually, not difficult at all...

    the most difficult part of the process would be populating the data into the DB.

    actually this would probably work with a cron job to send email...

    Quotations Database | HotScripts Quote Display

    OR

    since you keep mentioning Windows ( assuming your using the windows platform ), and this one uses a txt file, so assuming there is some kind of parsing tags that can be used ( I haven't looked at it )

    Add a quote of the day! | HotScripts Quote Display

    again, task manager and a simple VB script to call the page and send the email...

    as for your point about "But it will require me to learn a whole new skill for which I currently have no time"... that's sad, because the time you've taken to write this post, is about all the time you should need... and I can promise you, the time it took to create and modify a document with 365 quotes of scripture took way longer than it would to implement this

    sometimes, we (I'm guilty as well ), put too much value on OUR TIME for non-value added things we do, looking for shortcuts, handouts, exceptions to the rule... instead of defining what is the "real value"... Learning and Building something of use is more "value" to me... Especially so, if OTHERS can gain value in their lives from what I have learned, the value cannot be measured, but is an absolute.
    AlphaMare likes this.

  10. #9
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    I'd say it's probably spoofing of your email address. That is someone is sending emails with the recipient being the same as the sender but it doesn't mean they have access to your account. Usually they generate those emails automatically and their program set the same address on the sender and recipient, to bypass some SPAM filters.

    [EDIT: sneaky link drop added three days after original post removed!. AlphaMare]
    Last edited by AlphaMare; Aug 24th, 2013 at 07:14 AM.

  11. #10
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    Did you even read the post, Bertha Faye?
    If I've helped you out in any way, please pay it forward. My wife and I are walking for Autism Speaks. Please donate, and thanks.

    If someone helped you out, be sure to "Like" their post and/or help them in kind. The "Like" link is on the bottom right of each post, beside the "Share" link.

    My stuff (well, some of it): My bowling alley site | Canadian Postal Code Info (beta)


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