Our Team Blog

Winners of the Boxee + Twilio Developer Contest

And lo, from every field and foundry they came. They - heroes of their own time - answered a clarion call of competition and sallied forth onto the pitch to win honor, glory and some sweet, sweet hardware. Writing poetry in code and bending the boundaries of what was once thought possible, the proud corps of engineers who committed their sweat and their blood in the Boxee + Twilio Developer Contest asserted to the world that method and medium need no longer be segregated by the ancient shackles of traditional telecommunication. They proved that TV and telephone did, at long last, belong together, and in so doing became more than competitors.

They became legends of these fine Internets.

As strong as this competitive field was, sadly we are forced to select a first and second place. It was not at all easy, but after great deliberation by our rockstar panel of judges including Boxee CEO Avner Ronen, Twilio CEO Jeff Lawson, Boxee Platform Chief Idan Cohen and Twilio Head of Marketing Danielle Morrill, a winner has emerged.

Earning first place, a netbook from Twilio and a Boxee Box *before* it is available in stores is:

Bring the Popcorn
Drew Baumann and Brett Hazen

Screenshot_BringThePopcorn

Bring the Popcorn is a fun app to quickly organize a movie party directly from Boxee. Using a simple interface and leveraging the Twilio API, users can add their friends, sort out who brings what, and SMS those friends to see when they are coming over. The app was developed by a team of Luther College CS Majors Drew Baumann and Brett Hazen who flew out for the hack day event at Twilio HQ this past weekend.

Finishing in a close second and netting themselves a netbook from Twilio and an Acer Revo from Boxee is none other than:

Find My Phone
Fuzz the Destroyer

Screenshot-Boxee-2Prolific Boxee developer Fuzz the Destroyer adds to his extensive portfolio of Boxee apps with a dead simple and crazy useful entry called “Find My Phone.” The appropriately titled app uses the Twilio API to find where you put your phone with a clean interface and a wry sense of humor. Helpful for every Boxee install, this app even helped me find my own handset stuck behind a seat in the airport terminal in which this announcement was written.

All competitors who submitted an app will get our undying respect for joining our growing family… and a Boxee T-shirt. The entries in this contest were inspiring to all of us at Boxee and Twilio, and indicative of the radical change the living room is going to see in the next few years - a change our developer community is turning into reality every day.

April 15, 2010 at 2:19 pm

Cliqset brings real-time conversation to Boxee

With over 150 applications on Boxee we’ve seen a lot of creative apps, both visually and functionally, but today’s addition of Cliqset to Boxee has me in awe of how people are using Boxee’s platform. Cliqset is a new startup focused on letting you share, discuss, and discover your life online. It ties together 70 different services into an activity stream you can quickly share with friends and to social networks. Here’s a look at my activity stream through Cliqset, including Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, and Yelp.

Cliqset

One of Cliqset’s main goals is to enable real-time communication across these networks and around specific events in your activity stream. They’ve taken this focus and applied it to their new Boxee app allowing friends to have a conversation around a specific video. Rob Spectre has ingeniously built this app to tap into Boxee’s “Now Playing” description so anytime you want to comment or chat about a certain video, just load the Cliqset app while the video is playing and it will automatically link you to comments from other people who are watching the video, or who have watched it in the past. Here’s a look at what Cliqset’s real-time video chat looks like on Boxee.

Cliqset Chat

I sense many a long-distance date night taking place using this app : )

Cliqset just launched their Beta so sign up at Cliqset.com, and then install the app from the Boxee repository.

October 13, 2009 at 12:08 pm

Boxee welcomes Justin.TV to the block…

Justin.TV started as a guy with a webcam on his head and 3g-enabled laptop on his back. It’s now grown into the leading live video site on the web for people to broadcast, watch and interact around live video. With more than 41 million visitors per month and 428,000 channels broadcasting live video, Justin.tv has become a mecca for live entertainment… and now it’s available on Boxee.

We’re excited about Justin.TV’s App not only because of the content, but also because it was originally built by a boxee user and Justin.TV fan, Ike Gilbert. His initial app grabbed our attention and received a lot of support from the community so we put him in touch with the guys from Justin.TV who collaborated with him to bring out an official app - they even tweaked their API to enable features for him!

Ike and Justin.TV are a good example of how companies and passionate users can work together to help grow their brands and expand from the web onto the TV. Here’s a look at the app, which is available in the Boxee App Box now.

Justin.TV on Boxee

October 7, 2009 at 1:39 pm

Watch TechCrunch 50 on Boxee

TechCrunch 50, what the Huffington Post is calling the ‘Sundance of Startups’, is taking place in San Francisco. The event showcases 50 startups, fighting for attention from VCs, journalists, and business partners at the event. TechCrunch is live-streaming the entire event via uStream along with behind-the-scenes interviews with presenters like Penn (from Penn & Teller) and Google’s Marissa Mayer.

For those who’d rather surf through the event’s footage with a remote, Boxee App guru Rob Spectre has put together a clean application to give you access to the conference’s online video content. Watch the action happening right now using the “watch live” feature or choose from behind the scenes videos with Mike Arrington and some of the presenters / attendees at the show.

Here’s a peek at what it looks like.

TechCrunch50 App

Best of luck to all the startups presenting there, and thanks to Rob for another good app.

September 15, 2009 at 12:16 pm

Boxee gets roommates, homework, and Pita parties with Dorm Life

We’re happy to announce that Dorm Life, one of the most watched online web series, is now available on Boxee. Dorm Life holds the title for #1 rated web show on Hulu with over 7 Million views and counting. Dorm Life is a comedic mockumentary following the lives of seven college students thrown together on the same dorm floor. Full of mischief, adventures, rivalries and romance, the series offers an insider’s view of the rocky, and often awkward, road to adulthood.

Dorm Life

For those who went to college it will bring back old memories. For those who did not go to college, it might re-affirm that decision. Thankfully you can experience it all from the comfort of your couch now : )

September 10, 2009 at 8:00 am

Kid Mango brings kid’s entertainment to Boxee

We’re happy to announce our first fully customized Boxee App for children’s entertainment: Kid Mango.

The KidMango library brings together popular children’s shows from some of the world’s best producers of animation and live action and includes over a thousand videos covering everything from Einstein to aliens, vampires to Leonardo da Vinci. The App mimics www.kidmango.com where shows are organized by age group so that parents of preschoolers, older kids and tweens can all quickly find the content that is most appropriate to them. While the youngest children might need help from their parents in playing shows, older kids will have no problem loading up their favorite shows.

The Kid Mango App on Boxee makes it easy for parents to find great, free entertainment for their kids.
Here’s a peek at the App, which is available now in the Boxee App Box:

Kid Mango App on Boxee

The KidMango Boxee app was written by Rob Spectre, a Boxee App specialist. You can check-out the breadth of Rob’s work at www.gonzee.tv.

September 3, 2009 at 10:09 am

eGuiders help Boxee users find great entertainment

In an “on demand” world who wants to channel surf through millions of sites? The best way to discover great entertainment is through your friends and people whose opinion you trust. This principle guides the way we think about browsing & recommendations at Boxee. It’s also why we’re so excited to introduce an eGuiders App that helps you cut through the clutter of the Internet so you can stop searching for the best online videos and start watching them.

eGuiders unique video site discovers and reviews the best original online content through a team of trusted, credible voices in the media industry including producers, executives, editors, designers, and celebrities like comedians Jerry Stiller & Anne Meara, NPR Correspondent Margot Adler, writer Melissa Roth, and actor Austin Nichols along with a set of core eGuiders who constantly find great content from across the Internet.

eGuiders App

Thanks to eGuider Varlo Vanore for sharing Tarantino’s Top 20 movies since 1992 with us.
It’s movie time on Boxee this weekend.

August 28, 2009 at 10:01 am

Boxee brings Wired / Style on board

We’re happy to bring more great content to Boxee with the addition of videos from Wired.com and Style.com along with photos from Style.com’s runway fashion collections.

Wired.com is a stable part of any tech person’s web diet. They cover science and technology along with related cultural and political topics like few others. It’s a great place to learn about new gadgets (like the new Android phone), research and development that’s on the cutting edge (like Robofish), and issues that could affect how we use technology (like Net Neutrality & the FCC). We’ve worked with Wired to make it bring all this content into an easy interface for your TV.

Wired_Thumb

Style.com is the definitive fashion website, extending Vogue magazine to the Internet. Offering comprehensive runway coverage with over 50,000 photos, authoritative trend reporting, the latest social, celebrity and fashion news and interactive forums on every aspect of the fashion industry. We’ve worked with Style to bring not only their videos and interviews to Boxee (Style Studio), but also their runway fashion photos which provide a good introduction to the latest designer collection.

Style.com Video App

Style.com's Fashion Runway Photo Blog

Yesterday we helped make you smarter. Today we help you find the best tech and look good doing it.

August 25, 2009 at 10:06 am

FORA.tv & UNICEF come to Boxee

FORA

We are very glad to announce that videos from FORA.tv and UNICEF are now available on the Boxee App Box.

FORA.tv curates high quality videos about the people, issues, and ideas changing the world. They gather the web’s largest collection of unmediated video drawn from live events, lectures, and debates going on all the time at the world’s top universities, think tanks and conferences. Many of the videos are long form, thought provoking, powerful, heady stuff.

The FORA.tv Boxee App offers the latest videos in six categories: Economy, Environment, Politics, Science, Tech and Culture. There are more than 5,300 videos, with an average run time of about 1 hour. You could watch FORA.tv for 8 hours a day and it would take just under 2 years to finish watching all videos. Thankfully, there is a built in a search function :)

The Boxee UNICEF App

UNICEF is the UN organization dedicated to funding children’s education and rights. They influence decision-makers, and the variety of partners at grassroots level to turn innovative ideas into reality, working with others to overcome the obstacles that poverty, violence, disease and discrimination place in a child’s path.

UNICEF’s Boxee App gives users access to UNICEF television, UNICEF podcasts, and special photo essays which make quite an impact on a big screen. Each of these types of content (video, audio, and photos) help tell the story of what’s happening to children around the world - not only through the voice or lens of journalists, but also through those of the children themselves.

below is one of my favorite lectures from FORA.tv:

The addition of FORA.tv & UNICEF to content from OpenCourseWare, UK’s Open University, TED, and PBS are making Boxee a TV experience that will make you smarter.

**UPDATE: Congratulations to FORA.tv for being named one of Time Magazine’s 50 Best Websites.

August 24, 2009 at 5:00 am