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  • By Marcus Battle
    Custom Laravel 7 Email Verification with Twilio Verify and SendGrid Custom Laravel 7 Email Verification with Twilio Verify and SendGrid

    When you allow users to register with your application without verifying their email addresses, you decrease the likelihood of being able to contact them again. If they’re allowed to sign up with an incorrect email address, there’s no guarantee that they’ll navigate to their profile and fix it later.

    Email verification exists to correct this user experience flaw. When implemented correctly, email verification allows a user to sign up and receive a secure token sent to their email to confirm that they’re both real and have provided the correct email address.

    By adding verification to any step of your user‘s journey, Twilio Verify allows you to fight fraud before it starts and verify users with email, SMS, or voice.

    In this tutorial, you’ll be using Twilio Verify and SendGrid to override the default verification logic in Laravel and roll out your own system.

    It’s important to note that Laravel comes …

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  • By Marcus Battle
    Reduce Spam Registrations in WordPress with Verification Emails using Twilio Verify Reduce Spam Registrations in WordPress

    It’s no secret to WordPress owners that the platform running their website and 35% of the Internet is a spam magnet. Its popularity has caused hackers to push the limits of their creativity, releasing spambots across a third of the Internet. This means that less-secure websites suffer from exploitations and data integrity issues.

    Whether you are hosting your favorite cooking blog or The New York Times, your WordPress website needs extra prevention to stop fraudulent activity. That’s why we’re creating an email verification system and incorporate it directly into the WordPress user registration flow to reduce fraud. At the end of this tutorial, you will have a custom WordPress plugin that sends a secure email to every registrant before they can access their account.

    Why Not Use WordPress’ Default Confirmations?

    If you’re unaware, WordPress does include email confirmation for new registrations, but this alone doesn’t prevent skilled hackers from …

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  • By Marcus Battle
    How to Debug and Fix PHP Mail in Localhost How to Debug and Fix PHP Mail in Localhost

    Sending emails in your local environment using PHP’s mail() function should be straightforward. The function is 20-years-old and one of the most integral parts of any web application; email.

    If you’re not familiar with mail(), it’s a single function that only requires three arguments—a recipient, subject, and message—to deliver an email via one line of code. Sounds simple, right?

    Well, if you’ve actually tried to use the function in your local environment, you know firsthand that it’s not always that easy. You’re probably reading this tutorial because you’ve experienced the mail() function not working out of the box yourself. Maybe you’re even one of the 343K viewers of this unresolved, 5-year-old Stack Overflow ticket.

    So why isn’t my PHP mail function sending any mail?

    The truth is, there could be a number of reasons why your emails aren’t arriving in inboxes. However, I’ve found that most of those …

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  • By Marcus Battle
    Create a Video Conference App using Laravel, PHP, and Vue.js Create a Video Conference App in Laravel 7.png

    During times where we can’t be together physically, video conferencing helps reinforce and establish relationships by allowing us to monitor visual cues sometimes lost over the phone. Conference calls are great, but studies show that when we can’t see who’s talking, we’re more likely to get distracted by our favorite apps. Not only is video conferencing an excellent way to increase focus during meetings, but it’s also a great method for keeping in touch with family and friends during the coronavirus pandemic.

    In this tutorial you will learn how to create your own video conferencing app in Vue.js, using the Laravel framework and Twilio Programmable Video. There is no software to download, nor tutorials to follow. The final result is a link to a mobile-friendly video chat room, capable of hosting up to 50 participants.

    NOTE: This tutorial is written specifically for Laravel 7+ (although it may …

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  • By Marcus Battle
    Create Your Own Conference Line in PHP using Twilio Programmable Voice Create Your Own Conference Line in PHP using Twilio Programmable Voice

    As much of the world is grappling with the overnight shift to work from home, the trusted conference call is a staple that is needed now more than ever. Teams that have only been separated by floors and walls are now teleworking from makeshift offices in kitchens and bedrooms.

    While many software-as-a-service solutions exist, your company or organization may desire to roll out your own custom conference call solution or add it to an existing application. If PHP is your language of choice, this quick tutorial will teach you how to build your own conference line in PHP using Twilio Programmable Voice. Your team members will actually be able to call it directly and speak with one another from anywhere in the world.

    If Node.js happens to be your preferred language, Sam Agnew just wrote an awesome version of this tutorial on the Twilio blog.

    Prerequisites

    This tutorial …

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  • By Marcus Battle
    How to Send Bulk Emails in PHP using Twilio SendGrid How to send bulk emails in PHP using Twilio SendGrid

    Frequent and relevant communication with attendees is necessary when planning an event. There are too many opportunities for confusion if timely and detailed messages are not sent. Even when everything goes according to plan guests still need reminders as the event date draws closer.

    Bulk emails are a great method to keep everyone in the loop.

    In this tutorial, we will learn how to send bulk emails to an email list in PHP using Twilio SendGrid.

    We’ll use a foreach() loop to parse through an array of email addresses and build a single array of recipients using SendGrid’s personalization class. SendGrid allows us to personalize each email that every recipient receives. We can even modify content based on the individual email address.

    Tools Needed to Complete This Tutorial

    To complete this tutorial you’ll need the following dependencies installed:

    Get Started with …

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  • By Marcus Battle
    Send Transactional Emails in PHP with Twilio SendGrid Transactional Emails in PHP with Twilio SendGrid

    Your inbox is undoubtedly full of transactional emails. While they prevent you from getting to inbox zero, without them, you’d have a less informative Internet experience.

    Transactional emails are those sent from within an application when a certain event is triggered. In the case of an e-commerce store, you would send a transactional email when the user has completed their account signup and when they successfully complete their purchase.

    Historically, sending an email in PHP has been one of the simplest tasks to complete. With only the mail() function, you need only to insert a call to the mail() function within any part of your workflow to send a transactional email.

    It’s simplicity, though, has also been its downfall. If you are unfamiliar with the mail() function, know that PHP developers have a love-hate relationship with it because, while it’s easy to implement, it has its challenges with bulk …

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  • By Marcus Battle
    Build a Wake Word Detection Assistant in PHP using Ratchet for WebSockets and Twilio SMS Wake word detection in PHP using WebSockets

    Due to their data transmission speed and low latency, WebSockets open up exciting possibilities for real-time apps. Many of your favorite apps such as Google Docs, Instagram, and Facebook are already using them to keep us in sync with each other using live data.

    We’re going to dive deeper into the world of PHP WebSocket development by building a wake word and hot word detection assistant that communicates with us via SMS, similar to an Alexa.

    To begin, we’ll use the introductory tutorial, “How to Create a WebSocket Server in PHP to Build a Real-Time Application”. We’ll modify the HTML to create a <textarea> that streams the input value to our WebSocket. Our Socket() class will listen for a list of predefined keywords and upon a match, send an SMS to the user.

    If you haven’t already done so, download the repo here.

    Tools Needed to Complete …

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  • By Marcus Battle
    How to Create a WebSocket Server in PHP with Ratchet for Real-Time Applications Build a PHP WebSocket Server

    When WebSockets are discussed, PHP is rarely included in the conversation due to its lack of native support. Additionally, Apache, the HTTP server PHP normally runs on, is not built with persistent connections in mind which forces the responsibility of implementation onto 3rd party libraries.

    While there have been great attempts to bring PHP into the discussion of “real-time” development, most have paled in comparison to the Ratchet project; a PHP WebSocket library for serving real-time bi-directional messages between clients and server.

    In this tutorial, we will be using Ratchet with PHP to learn how to create a simple WebSocket server that processes messages sent from an HTML form in real time. Our form will display a single <input> and <button> to send a message to all client browsers. Every time the user sends a message their message will be displayed in real time on the other screens.

    This …

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  • By Marcus Battle
    Broadcast a Voicemail to Multiple Numbers in Laravel PHP with Twilio Voice Broadcast a Voicemail to Multiple Numbers in Laravel PHP with Twilio Voice.png

    My son just started kindergarten and his first year of not being homeschooled. To say that everyone was nervous was an understatement. Luckily, his school is filled with caring people who aren’t afraid to embrace technology for efficient communication (and calming nervous parents).

    There we were, running errands after his drop-off and our phone was alerted with an email including a photo and message of his progress. The personal touch of being able to see him relaxed calmed our anxiety, allowing us to enjoy the remainder of our afternoon.

    No matter how much we advance technology, it’s my opinion that we must find ways to include “human touch” as much as possible, even if it’s automated.

    This got me thinking about how else I would like to be contacted by his school, especially in case of an emergency. Wouldn’t it be cool if, instead of 160 characters, I could receive …

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