Cordova Plugin to add WebRTC Audio and Video

Over thcordova_bote past weeks I have been working on an open sourced, community driven, Cordova Plugin for OpenTok SDK that will give you the ability to add webrtc live audio/video chat to your Android and iOS applications. In this blog post I hope to let the OpenTok community know that this project is available and if you are a web developer with limited Android or iOS experience, you can now build OpenTok mobile apps with ease using the technology you are familiar with.

Jump right into your own project or watch a demo of the Cordova plugin in action! Since this project is open source, please file issues/concerns on the GitHub issue tracker and feel free to send pull requests!

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OpenTok experts offering live help on AirPair

airpair logoAirPair, a startup that offers live online consultations with programming experts, today announced partnerships with TokBox and a handful of other API companies. That means AirPair users will have direct access to OpenTok platform exports when they need it. When developers run into a bug, have questions, or need help with implementation, an OpenTok expert can help resolve their problems quickly, in real-time.

Interested in giving it a shot? Check out the TokBox Experts page on AirPair!

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Doing our part for Computer Science Education Week 2013

Obama Called. And We Responded.

Yesterday President Obama kicked off the Hour of Code Campaign for Computer Science Education Week 2013 with a inspiring video calling for every American to learn code.

Here at TokBox we are excited to help! In this post we will help you jump the next hurdle.

After learning the basics of web and/or mobile programming, most people get bogged down by technical complexity and knowledge.

Say, after building your first app, you want to add a feature to let users video chat with each other. Learning about real time video streaming itself, let alone implementing it, can take months! This is why we highly recommend playing with platforms and APIs after learning the basics of web/mobile programming. You will be able to put together interactive apps that you never thought were possible. For example, with just basic web and/or mobile programming knowledge, you can add live video chat/streaming to your web or mobile app with the right library.

There are many platforms out there that let you build technically difficult apps with basic programming knowledge. Here is a short list of our favorites that we have worked with at various hackathons. Because of these platforms, developers were able to use them and build amazing applications within 24 hours.

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PennApps fall 2013 TokBox winners: Will Crichton, Dillon Lareau, Patrick Xia, and Philip Garrison

A few weeks ago on September 6, 2013, a thousand students congregated at UPenn from all over the world, laptops out and ready to code. It was one of the largest student run hackathon in history. Out of the thousand, 4 sophomore students from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) rose up to the top to win the “Best Hack That Makes Life So Easy” prize by Venmo, “Best Cloud-Connected Hack” prize by Microsoft, and our prize, “Best Use of TokBox API”.

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Layout Container – Auto resizing video elements in a container

layoutcontainerWhen building OpenTok apps, there might be cases where you would like the videos inside a container to automagically resize to take up the largest resolution possible within the boundaries of their container. With layout container, an open sourced library available on github, you can do exactly that.

Want to see a live app that uses this layout container? Check out OpenTokRTC! Try typing “/focus” and “/unfocus” in the chat box to see additional functionalities of layout container.

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Getting started demo apps

If you have read through our getting started tutorial and know how to create sessions and tokens, you are good to go!

To get you started, we have a few simple and working video chat sample apps to get you started:

For more complicated features and functionalities, check out these demo apps:

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Getting Started with OpenTok: Creating sessions and Tokens

If you have read our Getting Started With OpenTok: From 0 to group video chat, you will see why we need to create sessions and their corresponding tokens.

Since creating sessions and generating its corresponding tokens involves your developer api key and secret, they should always be executed in your server to prevent your credentials from being exposed.

In short, sessions are like rooms. People connected to the same session Id will be able to publish and subscribe to each other’s video stream. Session Ids exist forever, so it’s safe to store them in the database.

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Getting Started with OpenTok: From 0 to simple group video chat

TokBox is the company that provides the video streaming API called OpenTok. This tutorial will be a walk through to creating a very simple group video chat application.

There are two flavors to the OpenTok API, OpenTok Flash that uses flash plugin and OpenTok WebRTC that uses the new and cool HTML 5 technology, and they are not interoperable.

WebRTC provides a much better video chat experience when it comes to quality but is currently only supported officially in Firefox and Chrome. Internet Explorer users must install Chrome Frame plugin.

Flash on the other hand, is supported in 99% of all browsers and allows the ability to record live video streams as they occur (archiving).

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Hollywood Hack Day 2013 – Pregame

Back for its 3rd year, Hollywood Hack Day is a two-day event that brings developers from all over Los Angeles and Orange County together to create the next generation of entertainment applications and we are very excited to be sponsoring this event again. If you live around the area, get your thinking hats on and register for your weekend of programming fun!

If you didn’t know already, TokBox provides a live video streaming API called OpenTok that lets you put live video chat into your website. We have a javascript library, iOS, and Android SDKs. To get a taste of how our API works, get started here!

If you have any questions with our API, feel free to reach out to us @tokbox or to me directly @songz or ask on stack overflow!

Heres a list of other sponsoring APIs and how they can can help you with your hack:

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API Scavenger Hunt Recap and Solution

Last weekend we ran a Family Guy Themed API Scavenger Hunt, and this was our question:

Peter Griffin wants to Video Chat with a well known Tech Consultant named Song Zheng to find out what tech trends he should invest in. After scouring the interwebz, a wise cat told him that Song is an evangelist at TokBox and his ApiKey is “25925352”. He is always connected to the session ‘2_MX4yNTkyNTM1Mn4xMjcuMC4wLjF-V2VkIE1heSAyOSAxNzoxMjozNyBQRFQgMjAxM34wLjk0MjQ2NjQ0fg’. To connect to that session, the wise cat has also intelligently acquired the access token:

"T1==cGFydG5lcl9pZD0yNTkyNTM1MiZzZGtfdmVyc2lvbj10YnJ1YnktdGJyYi12MC45MS4yMDExLTAyLTE3JnNpZz00YTNjYjk5ZThhOGVhNTMxOWMyYmY3NzQzNmM5MmRmNTgzNDIyNzc2OnJvbGU9cHVibGlzaGVyJnNlc3Npb25faWQ9Ml9NWDR5TlRreU5UTTFNbjR4TWpjdU1DNHdMakYtVjJWa0lFMWhlU0F5T1NBeE56b3hNam96TnlCUVJGUWdNakF4TTM0d0xqazBNalEyTmpRMGZnJmNyZWF0ZV90aW1lPTEzNjk4NzI3NjAmbm9uY2U9MC42MDQ5NzIyNjY5NDExNDA4JmV4cGlyZV90aW1lPTEzNzI0NjQ3NjUmY29ubmVjdGlvbl9kYXRhPQ=="

To solve this puzzle, you would have to connect to Song’s session and subscribe to his video stream using WebRTC. You might also want to publish your video as well so he can see you.

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