Simple OpenTok Publisher Widget

A few months ago I made an OpenTok JavaScript plug-in that created a simple widget that publishes and subscribes to. Essentially it creates a stripped down version of the basic html embed that allows you to customize things further however you’d like. You can try that widget live here.

This past week Pasha from PuppetSmith.com wanted to create a simple way for the admins on his site to publish a stream and have all non-admins as viewers. You could certainly build this functionality yourself with the full API, but it would be nice to have a quick solution for this common scenario.

As a result, I built in some features to the _OT.widget JavaScript plugin that will handle this scenario. Now, it will handle all publisher/subscriber logic depending on what token you pass it. You can also pass it the publishFull property that will show the publisher in full screen rather than in the corner of the window. With one publisher, this is what the widget looks like:

You can visit the GitHub repo for the plug-in here.

Here is a sample implementation in PHP that generates a token, passes it down to the widget, then initializes.

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TechCrunch Disrupt Contest Winner: Slides.IO

Thank you to all the developers who submitted applications for the OpenTok TechCrunch contest. There were 13 applications in total, and they were all fantastic. Everybody should be proud of what they created.

With that said, congratulations Kyle Powers on his winning entry Slides.io!

Slides.io uses OpenTok to create and broadcast presentations online. Here’s Slides.io in Kyle’s own words:

Slides.io is a web application for creating modern presentations. Presentations aren’t just a deck of slides anymore, and Slides.io understands this.

Straightforward, content-focused authoring tools provide efficient deck creation. Themes make them beautiful. Presentations are created in pure HTML5, JavaScript, and CSS3.

Presenters distribute a URL to the presentation, which includes live chat and video streaming provided by TokBox. Video archiving is forthcoming.

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HAPI Hack Summary

Last weekend we hosted HAPI Hack Weekend at our office in San Francisco. Over 40 talented hackers made it out to show off their skills and win prizes by hacking on 11 different APIs.

Here are the applications that were built using OpenTok:

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Guest post: Office Robot-Interns (a How-to Guide)

Guest Post written by Gizem Orbey, Development and Operations @Rapleaf

Last summer, now full-time Rapleafer Alex P. was but an intern with a dream. He wanted to keep working on Rapleaf projects when he returned to school in the fall. But how could he make his presence felt in the office while he was away?

By robot, of course. Alex built a prototype robot avatar using Legos, Arduino and a disassembled remote-control car. A couple of months ago, the project was advanced using the iRobot platform. An improved Version 2.0 featuring TokBox was built during Rapleaf’s quarterly hack-a-thon Hackleaf last week, when Emma and Steve from the engineering and biz ops teams joined forces with Alex to add some final touches. Here’s how they did it:

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TriviaTok: OpenTok meets Twilio Client

TriviaTok is a game show app designed and built by TokBox superintern, Ezra Velazquez.

How It Works:

Game is about to begin!

When the host clicks “Next Player”, a user in the audience is randomly selected and goes on screen to video chat with the host.  The rest of the audience gets to watch.  “Next Question” kicks off the game. The player can pick the right (or wrong) answer – or get help:

  • PHONE lets you call a friend (Twilio Client)
  • CROWD lets you tweet for help (Twitter API)
  • 50/50 eliminates two wrong answers (Ezra’s skillz)
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Live Face Recognition with OpenTok and Face.com

Next weekend is our second HAPI Hack Weekend at our office in San Francisco and we’re excited to have a bunch of interesting APIs there to hack with. One API that I’m particularly excited about is Face.com, which gives developers a set of methods for easy face recognition.

I created a simple app to introduce the basics of using OpenTok with Face.com:

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Win a chance to demo at TechCrunch Disrupt in SF!

Want to prove you’ve built the coolest OpenTok application? Think you have what it takes to demo to the most influential people in Silicon Valley?

Here’s a chance for you to prove it here in person in San Francisco! Just build the most compelling OpenTok app and you’ll win a place in  Startup Alley at TechCrunch Disrupt in San Francisco this September. To make the prize even sweeter, we’ll pay up to $2000 in travel expenses!

As a Startup Alley participant, you’re eligible for audience voting to participate in TechCrunch’s premiere startup competition, Startup Battlefield. If you win the “Audience Choice” award, you will earn a slot to present your product on stage during Startup Battlefield in front of an all-star panel consisting of the biggest innovators, angels, VCs and influencers in the Tech community on Wednesday, September 14th, 2011.  Winner must meet Startup Alley criteria; for more details, please visit this page.

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S.P.A.R.K Chicago – Only the strong survive

If Startup Weekend is entrepreneurship on training wheels, then we sure could use an event that’s one step more advanced. Once you understand the dynamics of choosing a team, the compromises involved in pivoting, and the pitfalls of not validating customers, there should be a place to dig deeper into your startup idea – execute, period. I’m glad to say this weekend I found that next step.

S.P.A.R.K Chicago kicked off last Friday like any other Startup Weekend, except these entrepreneurs were hungry. They knew that not only would they be judged on launching a startup in 54 hours, but the top three teams would move forward for another three days to find one ultimate winner. The stakes were high because the competition was steeper and the prizes were money. But what I saw motivating these teams was that coming out on top of this unique event would be something memorable (okay fine, the prizes valued at over $100k were part of it too).

Allow me to introduce you to some of the teams.

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You Fly, We Buy: Launch at Startup Riot Seattle

Here at TokBox we love seeing you, our OpenTok developer community, build awesome applications. To help make your OpenTok app a success, TokBox is sponsoring travel to Startup Riot Seattle for two deserving OpenTok app developers.

Apply now!

So what exactly is Startup Riot? Startup Riot is an all-day event which highlights 25 startups through three minute, four slide presentations given by the startups. The startups subsequently answer questions from a judging panel for three minutes.

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Adding metadata on connections

You can now attach metadata for each client that connects to a session. For example, you can add information about the connecting user. When a client connects to the session, all existing clients connected to the session can access the metadata for the new connection.

You add this metadata by passing it into the generate_token() method of the OpenTok server-side library. The metadata is then securely embedded in the token string. Here’s an example, using the OpenTok PHP library:

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