In my job I'm sometimes the deputy of the system administrator. Using nagios/zabbix/SNMP for monitoring I needed a decent plugin for Nagios to do HTTP alive checks. The standard one had some problems mainly with chunked transfer encoding, thus I hacked a plugin using the excellent libCurl library.
Further development goes on as ‘check_curl’ in monitoring-plugins in branch feature_check_curl. If you want help out testing or developing it should happen there.
An old archived version of the plugin can be found at http://git.andreasbaumann.cc/cgit/nagios-plugin-curl/.