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Vo(IP) Shows Up In Strange Places

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The marriage of the web and voice is slowly but surely happening. As two worlds come together you have voice showing up in all sorts of places. Andy Abramson has the scoop on a pending deal between Six Apart’s Live Journal and The Gizmo Project.

Live Journal which recently launched a Jabber-based IM network, is going to soon talk to Gizmo users. It was briefly mentioned in the comments on the previous Live Journal post. Andy adds that there will be voice talking between two networks as well.

Meanwhile boys from 37Signals have launched pointed out voice notes for Backpack. You get a phone number, where you can dial in (from one of the three numbers you can sign-up with: cell number, home phone and work phone) and leave voice notes. There is some kind of VoIP magic at the back it seems. (Jason, dude shoot me the details? Are you using Asterisk at the backend?)

Elsewhere, everyone is talking about SightSpeed. Okay, I did that, so no point repeating myself.

Update: 37Signal’s Jason Fried says voice notes for Backpack was actually built by a Backpack customer. Nice work!

4 Responses to “Vo(IP) Shows Up In Strange Places”

  1. Hi Om,
    Celltell voiceNotes for Backpack is made by me and has been adopted by 37Signals as a cool application.

    I loved Backpack so much but when I was traveling and had something to remember I wanted to put it in my Backpack account. So I wrote the application out of necessity. Looks like others have the same need :) To use it you only need a FREE Backpack account and a telephone number. I’ve tried to keep it really simple to use. But at the end of the month I’ll release an admin for the application.

    Since it was mentioned above, the application is really hosted on Voxeo’s commercial IVR system. They liked it so much they sponsored it and moved it from their staging servers to their production servers as long as the application stays free. Which it will be.

    I also plan on building an integration into Backpack’s calendar system, so you can add an event to your calendar through the same phone call.

    Check it out at

    Thanks for the write up.

    -Ali Daniali

  2. Looks as if voiceNotes is using a commercial VoIP vendor that sends voicemails as MP3 or WAV attachments. You register the phone numbers you’re going to call from. When you leave a voicemail they parse the incoming email, compare the caller ID to their registered accounts and then use Backpack’s API to publish the audio file to your account.

    They’ve registered different numbers (perhaps Vonage virtual numbers at $5 a month?) to give more people local calling options.