In this chapter, you'll be introduced to Hyper Text Markup Language (HTML), a declarative language used to structure modern websites. Using the rvest library, you'll learn how to query simple HTML elements and scrape your first table.
Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) describe how HTML elements are displayed on a web page, including colors, fonts, and general layout. In this chapter, you'll learn why CSS selectors and combinators are a crucial ingredient for web scraping.
The CSS selectors you got to know in the last chapter are powerful but have their limitations. For example, if you want to select nodes based on the properties of their descendants. XPath to the rescue! Using this query language, you can navigate and scrape even the most hideous HTML.
Now that you know how to extract content from web pages, it's time to look behind the curtains. In this final chapter, you’ll learn why HTTP requests are the foundation of every scraping action and how they can be customized to comply with best practices in web scraping.