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  • By Tilde Thurium
    How to build a conference line with Twilio Studio How to build a conference call line with Twilio Studio

    Twilio Studio is a visual application builder that allows you to write conditional logic for handling messaging flows without writing any code. In this post I’ll walk you through how to build a conference call line using Twilio Studio.

    Prerequisites

    Creating your Studio Flow for conference calling

    Head over to the Studio Dashboard. Click the “+” button to create a new Flow.


    You’ll be prompted to give it a name. Let’s call it “conference call.”

    Screenshot of the dialog box for creating a new Studio Flow. There's a "Flow Name" input field, that has the text "conference call" in it, as well as Cancel and Next buttons.

    On the next screen select “start from scratch” and …

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  • By Tilde Thurium
    7 cool APIs you didn't know you needed 7 cool APIs you didn't know you needed

    Human beings learn better through play.

    No matter what your experience level, this post will show you 7 fun and silly APIs you can play with and build on top of.

    If you’ve never written a line of code, don’t fret -- we’ll show you how to get started. Experienced programmers, feel free to skip down to the 7 APIs section.

    What is an API?

    An API stands for Application Programming Interface, which is a way for a program to communicate with another program. These programs can be running on the same computer, or not -- it really doesn’t matter. There are different types of APIs -- it’s a really broad term. Today we’ll focus on REST APIs.

    REST APIs follow a pattern that specifies how the information will be transmitted from one computer to another. The computer asking for the data is called the client, and the computer …

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  • By Tilde Thurium
    Using Twilio Studio and Conversations with SMS Using Twilio Studio and Twilio Conversations with SMS

    Communication is complicated. No matter what your business is, it’s important to meet people where they’re at and engage with them on the communication platforms they’re already using.

    Twilio Conversations enables you to build unified spaces where users on different platforms can communicate with one another. Think of it like a video conference bridge, but for text-based communication.

    Twilio Studio is a visual application builder that allows you to write conditional logic for handling messaging flows without writing any code.

    In this post you’ll learn to integrate Studio and Conversations with a few steps of configuration and a small amount of code. Doing so unlocks a few use cases, such as:

    •  Access to the status callbacks so you can keep track of message delivery status
    • Sending the entire chat transcript to a human operator

    Prerequisites

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  • By Tilde Thurium
    QR Codes And Security: A Shallow Dive QR-codes-security-shallow-dive

    QR codes have been referred to as “robot barf.” Which is too bad, because they’re pretty fascinating if you take a closer look.

    In this post, you’ll learn about:

    • History and inner workings of QR codes
    • Use cases and risks
    • How to generate QR codes in your application
    • How QR codes are used for two-factor authentication

    QR codes 101

    QR code is an abbreviation for Quick Response code. They’re a type of two-dimensional, or “matrix” barcode which means that information is stored across both the horizontal and vertical axes.

    QR codes were invented in Japan during 1994. They were originally used for tracking automobile parts. QR codes could store more data than UPC barcodes (the kind you commonly see on grocery store products and such), so they started to catch on in other industries as well. Denso Wave, the company that invented QR codes, made the spec …

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  • By Tilde Thurium
    Queueing Emails With Python, Redis Queue And Twilio SendGrid Queueing emails with Python, Redis Queue and Twilio SendGrid

    If you’re sending email from within a web application, you’ll want to do so asynchronously so you don’t block requests from completing. Especially if it takes additional (potentially slow) requests to construct the email content. There are several Python libraries available to help with asynchronous tasks, such as celery. Alternately, you can use asyncio if you’re on Python 3.4 or above.

    Redis Queue is the friendliest to get started with. Today I’ll show you how to queue emails to be sent asynchronously with Redis Queue and Twilio SendGrid.

    To keep things spicy, let’s use the Taco Fancy API to email a randomly generated taco recipe.

    Getting Started

    To follow along, you’ll need:

    • Python 3.5 or above installed
    • A free SendGrid account - sign up here
    • An email address, to test things out and make sure they’re working

    First, create a new Python project. In case you need it, …

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  • By Tilde Thurium
    Sending Bulk Emails With Twilio SendGrid and Python Sending Bulk Emails with Twilio SendGrid and Python

    Sending a single email is great, but one of the big advantages of email is the ability to quickly reach a wide audience. Today I’ll show you how to send mass emails with Python and SendGrid. Just for fun, let’s say you’re a Python developer who works at a donut shop. You need a way of letting the customers who have signed up for your email list know when fresh donuts have come straight out of the oven. 🍩

    Prerequisites

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  • By Tilde Thurium
    Sending Bulk Emails 3 Ways With Twilio SendGrid And Node.js Sending Bulk Email 3 Ways With Twilio SendGrid and Node.js by Tilde Thurium, Twilio Developer Evangelist

    Sending a single email is great, but one of the big advantages of email is quickly reaching a wider audience. Today I’ll show you three ways to send bulk emails with Node.js and SendGrid. Just for fun, let’s say you’re a JavaScript developer who works at a donut shop. You need a way of letting the customers who have signed up to your email list know when fresh donuts have come straight out of the oven.

    Prerequisites

    Setting up your environment

    First, create your API key from the …

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  • By Tilde Thurium
    SMS Affirmations With Twilio And Flic Buttons SMS affirmations with Twilio and Flic buttons

    Earlier this year I built an affirmations button with Twilio Internet of Things. When I’m feeling insecure or anxious (which is often), the button lets me ground myself with a physical gesture and receive a reassuring text message in return.

    A wooden box with a blue button on the top sits on a table. The box has turquoise, teal, and neon yellow stripes.

    The box holding the button looks cool but it's not as portable as I’d like, since it contains a Raspberry Pi. As a Twilio Developer Evangelist, I’m on the road writing code fairly often. I needed something that takes up less space in my luggage.

    Today I’ll show you how to build a more portable affirmations button with Flic.

    What is a Flic button?

    Flic buttons are hardware buttons that are small enough to fit in a pocket. Out of the box, they can be configured to do various things when pushed, such as:

    You can …

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  • By Tilde Thurium
    Beep Boop: 6 Bots To Better Your Open Source Project 6-bots-better-open-source-project

    The second law of thermodynamics states that entropy always increases over time. To put it another way, chaos overtakes order little by little. Open source software projects are no exception. The longer a project grows and survives, the more issues and unmerged pull requests it will accumulate. Unresolved problems from the past make it hard to keep up with new contributions.

    Bots to the rescue. Automation can help welcome new contributors and let them know what to expect. Outsourcing this labor to robots eases the burden on maintainers, freeing up time for more important tasks. Such as reviewing all those Hacktoberfest pull requests that are pouring in.

    In this post, I’ll show you 6 ways to improve your open source project with Probot. The improvements fall into two broad categories: warmly welcoming new contributors, and communicating project norms or expectations.

    Probot 101

    Probot is a Node.js framework for building …

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  • By Tilde Thurium
    3 Ways To Brick Your Raspberry Pi 3 Ways To Brick Your Raspberry Pi

    I learned over the course of my first hardware project that, well, hardware is hard. Today I’ll show you three easy ways to turn a Raspberry Pi into a paperweight.

    Shorting the +3 Volt Pin

    For this hack, you’ll need a Pi Model 3 B+ and a multimeter. Let’s say you have a button hooked up to your GPIO pins, but pressing the button does nothing and you can’t figure out why.

    Place the prongs of your multimeter on 3v3 power pin and BCM pin 18.

    Don’t use alligator clips to keep your probe steady. Make sure that your hands are so shaky that the probe slips off BCM 18 and hits the 5v pin, letting out all the magic smoke. 🔥

    a fritzing diagram of a Raspberry Pi and a multi-meter in "volt" mode hooked up to the 3v3 pin and the 5v pin and reading 0 volts.

     

    If your multimeter shows 0 volts on the 3v3 pin, congratulations on successfully bricking your Pi! Of course, if you’re the conscientious sort, you can verify that …

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