[R] Navigating web pages using R

Erik Gregory egregory2007 at yahoo.com
Tue Jan 4 19:54:19 CET 2011


I'm trying to obtain some data from a webpage which masks the URL from the user, 
so an explicit URL will not work.  For example, when one navigates to the web 
page the URL looks something like: (changed for privacy, but i'm not sure 
you could access it anyways since it's internal to the agency I work for).
The site has three drop-down menus for "Site", "Month," and "Year".  When a 
combination is selected of these, the resulting URL is 
always (nothing changes, except "flags=1" is 
dropped, so what I need to be able to do is write something that will navigate 
to the original URL, then select some combination of "Site", "Month", and 
"Year," and then submit the query to the site to navigate to the page with the 
Is this a capability that R has as a language?  Unfortunately, I'm unfamiliar 
with html or php programming, so if this question belongs in a forum on that I 
apologize.  I'm trying to centralize all of my code for my analysis in R!

Thank you,
-Erik Gregory
Student Assistant, California EPA
CSU Sacramento, Mathematics

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