We held a developer contest last week with our friends at Infochimps. The theme was data, and the goal was to see what interesting applications our developer communities could make using both Twilio’s API and Infochimps data sets and data APIs. We got everything from an app that reports your Twitter influence to a tool to help you look up valid words for Scrabble. In the end, we thought Roger Pincombe’s entry, Social Contact, made the best use of all the data available through Infochimps.
To use Social Contact, simply send a person’s Twitter username as a text to (203) 403-NAME (6263). You’ll get back an e-mail containing a vCard with as much information as possible. Information such as full name, company and title, email (occasionally), phone number (occasionally), home page url, home location (generally city-level), description, summary, Klout, photo, Facebook profile link, and other social profile pages.
Here’s what Roger had to say about his entry:
“I’m a big fan of Twilio (I’ve won a competition before), and this contest allowed me to solve a problem I’ve been running into a lot recently as a fledgling entrepreneur, remembering all the amazing people I meet on a daily basis. I have a horrible memory, and I’m especially bad with names, so sometimes meeting people again can be kind of awkward. What does he do again? What was her name? With 203-403-NAME, all I have to do is text someone’s twitter username, and I instantly get back a name, photo, job, and sometimes other contact info, ready to be added to my phone’s address book for future reference. Oh, and I have a great domain name, http://contacts.io, that I’ve been wanting to find a use for, so this fits nicely. I’ve got a web interface in the works, which should be ready to go in less than a week.
“I’ve been doing VoIP development with various solutions for years. I’ve hosted my own Asterisk server with AGI integration, I’ve worked with hosted IVR systems, and I have experimented with Twilio and competing solutions quite a bit. As always, Twilio was the easy part! I spent no more than 15 minutes on the Twilio side of things. Getting iOS to play nicely with the vcard format however, that took many hours!
“Other than Twilio and Infochimps, I used a variety of API’s as well as some good old scraping and whois lookups. It’s based around the Infochimps Social Identity Mapping API, but I also made use of the Google Social Graph API. All the code is in C#, running on ASP.NET 4.0. And just to make things interesting, right after I thought I was finished, LinkedIn started blocking scraping via Dapper.net, so I had to redo that portion.”
Luckily, Roger got his entry done in time. If you’d like to play around with Social Contact, just send a text to (203) 403-6263 with a Twitter username.
There could only be one winner, but we also wanted to recognize Textable, made by Steve Odom. Using a variety of the Infochimps data sets, Steve created an SMS application that helps people find important nearby locations in unfamiliar cities.
Say you land in Austin and need to find WiFi quickly. Simply text “wifi AUS” to (512) 782-2513 and you’ll get back a list of nearby places that offer wifi. Text “walgreens 78702″ and you’ll get back nearby Walgreens locations. In general you can text wifi, library, walgreens, and help (Steve is working on adding walmart, atm, and UFOs) followed by a zip code or three-letter airport code. Give it a whirl!
Want to get involved? We hold developer contests regularly. For this week’s contest, we want to see how developers power up conferencing. Be creative and take conferencing to the next level and you could win an Amazon Kindle 3G, $100 in Twilio credit, and swag! Get all the details here.