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  • By Rahim Sonawalla
    Join Twilio in Chicago This Weekend for TechWeek 2011 logo

    This Saturday and Sunday, we’ll be attending the TechWeek Conference in Chicago. TechWeek is a week-long celebration of new technology; it’s made up of the TechWeek Conference (Friday, July 22nd to Sunday, July 24th) as well as a week of events like Tech Cocktail and Startup Weekend Chicago.

    Demo

    During the conference, we’ll have a large booth in the main hall as part of the larger hacker lounge. If you’re using Twilio in your company, we’d love for you to share our space and show people what you’re working on! If you’re interested in displaying at the Twilio booth, please e-mail rahim@twilio.com. Or, just stop by and say hi!

    Participate

    Jeff and Rahim will also be speaking at the conference and would love to see you in their sessions:

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  • By Rahim Sonawalla
    Sean Saulsbury Wins Our Power Up Conferencing Developer Contest With Call In Studio logo

    Last week, we challenged developers to take Twilio’s conferencing features and apply them in new and interesting ways. We had some great entries, but in the end, we decided Sean Saulsbury’s Call In Studio was the most interesting application of conferencing.

    Call In Studio allows Internet and radio show producers to easily screen and manage calls for their shows. Since radio stations no longer need to buy expensive equipment and software to handle incoming calls—and only pay for the time they use—even smaller radio stations and individual podcasters can offer call in as part of their show programming.

    For winning our Power Up Conferencing developer contest, Sean will receive an Amazon Kindle 3G, $100 in Twilio credit, and some sweet Twilio swag. Congrats, Sean!

    Honorable Mention

    We also really liked Matthew Berkland’s Call Me Meeting, which has a clean interface and provides a more flexible ...

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  • By Rahim Sonawalla
    New Developer Contest: Twilio + DotCloud logo

    For this week’s developer contest, we’ve partnered with our friends at DotCloud. Unlike most PaaS providers that are centered around a single language (Orchestra for PHP, AppHarbor for .NET, and so on), DotCloud, let’s you easily build your own, custom stack. For example, you could be running a classic PHP/MySQL setup and with just a few edits of a config file, swap out MySQL for MongoDB.

    This week, create a Twilio application hosted on the fantastically flexible DotCloud platform, and you could win:

    • $100 in Twilio credit
    • A Pro DotCloud account
    • An insanely awesome Arduino Gadget Pack
    • Swag from both Twilio and DotCloud

    Bonus points for putting together helpful materials (screencasts, blog posts, etc.) that demonstrate the value of what you’ve built, or explain how it could become a business someday.

    Learn more and submit your contest entry…

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  • By Rahim Sonawalla
    New Developer Contest: Twilio + DotCloud logo

    For this week’s developer contest, we’ve partnered with our friends at DotCloud. Unlike most PaaS providers that are centered around a single language (Orchestra for PHP, AppHarbor for .NET, and so on), DotCloud, let’s you easily build your own, custom stack. For example, you could be running a classic PHP/MySQL setup and with just a few edits of a config file, swap out MySQL for MongoDB.

    This week, create a Twilio application hosted on the fantastically flexible DotCloud platform and you could win:

    • $100 in Twilio credit
    • A Pro DotCloud account
    • An insanely awesome Arduino Gadget Pack
    • Swag from both Twilio and DotCloud

    Bonus points for putting together helpful materials (screencasts, blog posts, etc.) that demonstrate the value of what you’ve built, or explain how it could become a business someday.

    Entries must be submitted by 11:59pm PT on Sunday July 24th. Entries can ...

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  • By Rahim Sonawalla
    Rising Tides Lift All Ships, Or What I learned at Startup Festival Montreal logo

    This past week I hopped on a red-eye to Montreal to attend the International Startup Festival. Despite being its first year, the two-day conference brought almost a thousand attendees. What I liked about the conference—besides being held in beautiful Montreal—was that it really drove home the fundamentals of creating and running a business. A return to sensibilities.

    Here are my big takeaways from the event. For many, these will come off as painfully obvious, and yet I see them being ignored time and time again.

    Get good advisors. Paul Palmieri from Millenial Media spoke to the audience about building a team of advisors. It’s often said that the team is a deciding factor in the success or failure of a business. This shouldn’t be limited to just your employees. A good team of advisors can benefit your business immensely.

    While “rock star” advisors may be good ...

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  • By Rahim Sonawalla
    Easy Conference Calling with Twilio logo

    We’re running a developer contest this week centered around Twilio’s conference calling features, so I thought it would be helpful if I did a quick run through of the verb.

    Have Your People Call My People

    The most straight-forward way of setting up conference calling is to drop all incoming calls into a conference using the verb:

    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" ?>
    <Response>
        <Dial>
            <Conference>MyConference</Conference>
        </Dial>
    </Response>
    

    The name of the conference is namespaced to your account, so you can name it anything you like. Anyone dialing into “MyConference” for your account will be put in a conference room together.

    We can spice up our conference room a bit using the waitUrl attribute. Set waitUrl to an audio file (like an MP3), and you can give your conference participants some music to listen to ...

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  • By Rahim Sonawalla
    Roger Pincombe Wins Our Twilio/Infochimps Contest With Social Contact logo

    Roger PincombeWe 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 ...

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  • By Rahim Sonawalla
    New Developer Contest: Power Up Conferencing with Twilio logo

    It’s easy to create simple conference calls using Twilio’s verb. For this week’s developer contest, we’d like to see how you could take conferencing to the next level.

    For example, Bridg.me used Twilio to create “impossibly simple conference calling”—just add a meeting in your Google Calendar and all the participants get called automatically when it’s time for the conference, no need to remember conference PIN numbers.

    Lucid Meetings is another example of conferencing taken to the next level. They used Twilio’s conferencing features to create a service that helps people hold effective meetings using parliamentary procedures.

    This week, be creative and show us how you’d power up conferencing. You could win $100 in Twilio credit, an Amazon Kindle 3G, and some sweet Twilio swag.

    For those of you new to conferencing in Twilio, here’s a short video to get you ...

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  • By Rahim Sonawalla
    New Developer Contest: Power Up Conferencing with Twilio logo

    It’s easy to create simple conference calls using Twilio’s verb. For this week’s developer contest, we’d like to see how you could take conferencing to the next level.

    For example, Bridg.me used Twilio to create “impossibly simple conference calling”—just add a meeting in your Google Calendar and all the participants get called automatically when it’s time for the conference, no need to remember conference PIN numbers.

    Lucid Meetings is another example of conferencing taken to the next level. They used Twilio’s conferencing features to create a service that helps people hold effective meetings using parliamentary procedures.

    This week, be creative and show us how you’d power up conferencing.

    Learn more and submit your contest entry…

    Read More
  • By Rahim Sonawalla
    Chad Smith Wins our OpenVBX Contest With His Stripe Payments Plugin logo

    Engagement-photoGetting paid, to many it’s a forte; to others, it’s the essence of business—making things people want and then charging money for it. But as important as it is, handling payments has never been as easy as it should be. For our OpenVBX developer contest, Chad Smith (no, not the drummer), created a plugin that hopes to change that.

    Using the Stripe Payments API, Chad’s plugin allows you to easily take payments over the phone. The caller simply enters their credit card number and expiration date and a transaction takes place.

    Since both OpenVBX and Chad’s plugin are opensource, you can modify it to do all kinds of things like pay bills through an automated system, e-commerce by phone, pre- and post-pay long distance services, pay-as-you-go voicemail or conferencing, or really anything that requires charging a credit card over the phone

    If this sounds up ...

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