DeveloperWeek and AppsWorld

With the amount of time we spend on the road, it is always fun for the San Francisco segment of our team to attend a hometown event, and recently we got two in one week.

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DeveloperWeek was kicked off with a hackathon, and then featured a packed week of speakers, panels, happy hours and other events. Singly co-founder Simon Murtha-Smith gave a tech talk at the event (video below).

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Here’s where we set up camp for both days of AppsWorld

Next was AppsWorld, a conference at Moscone center that drew an international crowd of 5,000 people involved in the app industry, from developers to dev shops to engineering/hosting tools and services to VCs. Our booth was right in the center of the action, and we enjoyed meeting a vast array of people.

Below is Simon’s talk from DeveloperWeek. If you have any questions about it, please email community@singly.com

Teaming up with CloudMine for Backend Superpowers

Building an app is a lot of work. From setting up servers and deployment environments, to connecting disparate data providers and services, to building scalable infrastructure, to design and frontend development, to the coding of the backend logic; there’s a lot on your plate.

Building on Singly eliminates API and OAuth wrangling, but backend infrastructure can still be a headache.

Enter CloudMine – the scalable, instant backend platform for your app trusted by individual developers and Fortune 500 companies alike. By leveraging this new partnership, you will get your product to market far faster than you ever could have before.

All the work we do at Singly is aimed at empowering developers to build interesting experiences. We believe that our product and SDKs can make a big difference, but we want to support your entire development process from idea to exit — and CloudMine is a step in that direction.

The CloudMine toolkit—made up of its native mobile SDKs, web APIs, and developer dashboards—acts as a gateway to its fully-scaled, secure backend solution. CloudMine stores and secures apps’ data, manages user accounts, eliminates the need for developers to maintain and scale their own servers, and more. This allows developers to build and ship apps faster and with lower risk. Just as Singly handles the data scaling considerations, CloudMine handles the majority of backend work, so that mobile developers don’t have to.

With CloudMine’s powerful backend tools and Singly’s SDK and API integration, you’ll get your app to market faster and scale more confidently.

Check out the docs for CloudMine and Singly.

How the Windy City won our hearts

We just got back from a fantastic weekend in the Chicago, where we partnered with Braintree to throw a weekend-long App Challenge. As we continue to recover from the 28-hour marathon of hacking and fun, we thought we’d share some thoughts with the world.

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Chicago’s got it going on

From the moment we left O’Hare, we were welcomed with open arms. Braintree took us into their beautiful office and set us up with workspace for the day, in a treehouse, nonetheless. We’d never speak badly of the community in San Francisco, but we will say that we were floored by the kindness we encountered every minute of our trip – from strangers, new friends and old friends alike.

Then, on Saturday morning things really got exciting. As scores of entrepreneurs filed into the office, the building energy was palpable. From the moment the pitches ended, we knew we were going to see some cool stuff on Sunday.

The projects

After staying up late and waking up early – or, in some cases, never going to sleep at all – the deadline hit on Sunday and it was time to demo. The only rules were that the project was built in the allotted time and that you used one of the sponsor APIs: Singly, Braintree, Tout, Path.To and Venmo. Here are just a few of the fantastic apps:

  • Twizzl.io: Twizzlio turns your social media connections into a competitive sport. Your social media savvy is tested as you predict which of your own friends, favorite celebrities, and preferred brands will rise in online popularity across Facebook and Twitter.
  • ForGift: Aimed at solving the problem of people forgetting loved one’s birthdays, ForGift tells you who had a recent birthday and makes it very easy to send them some money (with Venmo) and a video postcard (with Tout).
  • Nocti: This mobile app answers the age old question: “What should I do tonight?” By drawing facebook interests, geo-location and more, Nocti suggests the thing you’d most like to do tonight.
  • RacyBike: A mobile app + hardware hack that allows two friends to place a bet on a bike race, and then allows the loser to pay the winner (with Venmo) directly in the app.
  • Blackmail For Friends: Build on the premise that 15 seconds is enough time to blackmail anyone. You shoot an embarrassing clip of your friend, and they receive a message saying they must send you money within one hour or else the video will be posted to that person’s Facebook wall. (Legal review pending)
  • And much, much more.

The results:

Throughout the weekend, we had some bugs filed and fixed, Beau built a new connector for our API (Tout), and one of the teams even committed open-source code to Singly. Beyond all that, we were truly impressed by the caliber of work that was done. Here are the winners:

  • Best use of Singly: Twizzl.io
  • Best use of Braintree: YourPhotoWall
  • Best use of Venmo: ForGift
  • Best use of Tout: NFC Geeks
  • Overall winner of App Challenge Chicago: ForGift

Onward

This was our first big out-of-town event, and it went very well. In the coming months, expect to see more Singly, in more places!

With more than a dozen prizes awarded, many people walked away from the weekend with cool new stuff. For us, the coolest part was to return to San Francisco with a new community of friends in the thriving tech community of Chicago.

Special thanks to Braintree, Tout, Venmo and Path.to for collaborating on this event.

Singly has Swagger

We are excited to announce that Singly now implements the Swagger framework. If you have a Singly account, the Swagger UI is available along with our current API Explorer from our docs. If you don’t yet have a Singly account, signing up is free and easy.

Swagger is a huge upgrade because it brings the amazing power of well-developed APIs to the surface. Their purpose isn’t just to move blobs of faceless data from one server to another, but to interact with the service and the amazing insights that live within it.

With Singly, this means not just getting your users’ social data on dozens of services, but also enabling accessing data that originated nearby, sharing out statuses and photos to the services, and filtering by friends or time. Swagger gives you a sandbox for exploring all of this, which is a great first step to implementing them in your app.

We imagine where Swagger has replaced walls-of-text describing APIs. That’s why our next step is to expand our support to other parts of Singly, like authentication and profile management.

We’d recommend that all APIs hop on the Swagger Wagon.