Archive for December, 2010
One of the things that makes Tropo truly amazing is it’s support for speech recognition.
Speech recognition is becoming increasingly important in our everyday lives. Smartphones and powerful handheld devices enable multimodality, and there are more and more restrictions placed on our use of phones while doing other things (like driving).
This Christmas, the open government data elves have been busy.
They’ve been building useful applications with data sets from municipal governments, open source software and multi-channel communication platforms like Tropo.
Here at Tropo, we understand the need for speed.
Consider that in the last few weeks we’ve written one, two, three, four blog posts covering different ways to leverage the unique nature of our scripting platform to build blazing fast, real-time communication apps.
We’re constantly adding new features to our Node.js library for building Tropo applications. Just this week we added support for the new Tropo REST APIs that allow you to provision phone/SMS numbers and IM addresses for your apps, and for injecting events into running Tropo apps.
Learning to Node
Node.js is a good candidate for applications that have high concurrency or low latency requirements because of one of it’s chief characteristics – it’s non blocking. When you ask Node.js to perform an operation, it does not wait for the completion of that operation before executing subsequent instructions. This lets you write more efficient (faster) applications because you don’t have to wait for the completion of a specific operation before doing something else.
Node.js is also event-based rather than thread-based. This makes it different from other web technologies (like Apache) that spawn new threads to handle concurrent connections. Node.js uses an event loop instead of threading, which provides a much more efficient approach to concurrency. This makes Node.js particularly well suited for applications that have lots of connections that are non-trivial in length – like real-time applications.
With Node.js you don’t need to use an external library – events are baked in. (more…)
Some of the most-requested features for Tropo have arrived. APIs to manage applications, add and remove numbers, and remotely control a running Tropo session are now available. If I were a cliched hack, I’d call this a Christmas gift for Tropo users. But I’m not, so I won’t.
We continue our focus this week on ways to create real-time interfaces for your users via Tropo for phone calls, instant messaging, SMS and Twitter. As promised in my recent blogpost, WebSockets with Tropo, I would like to build upon Chris Matthieu’s XMPP with Tropo post by throwing BOSH into the mix.
Interactive applications require low-latency, just like phone calls, in order to make them real-time and natural. While REST drives much of the APIs on the web today, sometimes it just adds too much overhead and therefore introduces latency. In steps WebSockets, a part of the HTML5 standard. WebSockets provide a persistent bi-directional connection between your users and yours services. Now, with Tropo, you may write real-time applications that provide snappy interactions to drive games, interactive billboards and just about any other interactive application that requires a great user experience.