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This essay does not describe an existing computer program, just one that should exist. This essay is about a suggested student project in Java programming. This essay gives a rough overview of how it might work. I have no source, object, specifications, file layouts or anything else useful to implementing this project. Everything I have prepared to help you is right here.

This project outline is not like the artificial, tidy little problems you are spoon-fed in school, when all the facts you need are included, nothing extraneous is mentioned, the answer is fully specified, along with hints to nudge you toward a single expected canonical solution. This project is much more like the real world of messy problems where it is up to you to fully the define the end point, or a series of ever more difficult versions of this project and research the information yourself to solve them.

Everything I have to say to help you with this project is written below. I am not prepared to help you implement it; or give you any additional materials. I have too many other projects of my own.

Though I am a programmer by profession, I don’t do people’s homework for them. That just robs them of an education.

You have my full permission to implement this project in any way you please and to keep all the profits from your endeavour.

Please do not email me about this project without reading the disclaimer above.

In our modern world, corporations have much more power than individuals. They can use their wealth to promove their interests by hiring lobbyists to use means legal, questionable and illegal to influence legislators. They can also embed political messages in the radio and TV shows they sponsor. The main power the individual has over them is the power not to buy their products and to organise boycotts to convince others to avoid buying their products.

The problem for the individual consumer is knowing who is sponsoring what. Even if you see a TV commercial in the middle of a show, that sponsor may have just bought block time on the station and has no particular affiliation with the show. What you want to know, for any particular show, the breakdown of ad revenue from sponsors, even ones that inadvertently advertise.

You can then do your best to apply pressure:

Your problem is primarily collecting the information and ensuring it is accurate. You may do this partly with webscraping. Your clients can then sign up for notifications about:

To start, you might select some small interest area, e.g. genetically modified foods, abortion, health care, pesticide use, gay marriage.

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