Feb 24 2011

Introducing Some Cool LetsLunch Badges

They’re here! We have a few cool badges for you. Check out the new “Profile” section, and see what you earned so far. It’s mostly for bragging rights, but also to let you know where you stand compared to everyone else.

For instance, my favorite badge is “Early Adopter”: it means you used LetsLunch during the month that we launched. The only way to earn this badge is by having a lunch before February 28, 2011. Talk about limited edition!

Below are the badges I currently have:

What they mean: I get very high feedback from the people I meet (good to know people enjoy my company). And I have been on more than 3 lunches so far in a month, quite an impressive rythmn.

Give us some ideas and let us know what badges you’d like to see!

Feb 14 2011

SMS Relay for LetsLunch in Only 99 Lines of Code

You are on your way to a lunch  with another hacker that you arranged through LetsLunch.com. You receive a SMS message from the person you are meeting: “Hi, I’m early, so I already grabbed a table. Look for me in the back.”

SMS are just plain convenient for sharing those kinds of notifications. And now, after writing 99 lines of code, LetsLunch lets you exchange SMS with the person you are scheduled to meet, without having to know their phone number. It’s magic!

How does it work? You text the LetsLunch number. Caller ID tells us who you are. We look up who you are having lunch with, and simply forward them your message. The best part is that if they text back, it works seamlessly: their answer gets forwarded to you exactly the same way.

This “gateway” is live on the day of your lunch. Another week, for another lunch, you just text the same number, and it is correctly forwarded to the person you are meeting that day.

How much simpler could it get?

It’s great for privacy — you don’t share your cell phone with anyone. It’s convenient.

PS: Thank you Twilio, they have a great platform, it was a breeze to implement: 99 lines of code, 3333 Bytes. I’m not making those numbers up.

PPS: we’re looking for a php developer. Contact us if you want to join a fun startup right when it starts!

Check out those snippets of code:

$name = $_REQUEST['From'];
$sql = "SELECT ..."; // Find the lunch pair base on who sent the sms
$client = new TwilioRestClient($AccountSid, $AuthToken);
$response = $client->request("/$ApiVersion/Accounts/$AccountSid/SMS/Messages",
"POST", array(
  "To" => $cell,
  "Body" => "From $fromName: " . $_REQUEST['Body']
  header("content-type: text/xml");
  echo "<?xml version=\"1.0\" encoding=\"UTF-8\"?>\n";
  echo "<Response><Sms>Your message was forwarded to {$name}.</Sms></Response>";

Feb 11 2011

By Popular Request: View The Other Person’s Profile (LinkedIn, Twitter)

This was a very popular request: how can I see who I’m scheduled to have lunch with? We just added a new feature that lets you see the social profile of the other person, right on the page where you confirm whether you can make it or not. It looks like this:

Of course, to respect our users’ privacy, what is being displayed is entirely under your control. We offer three levels of privacy. You can choose to disclose information only to people you are meeting. You can mark some information entirely private, so while LetsLunch can use it to estimate your reputation, it will never be shared with any user. And of course some information you can choose to make visible to all.

We also wanted to make sure that you have full control over this, so you can set different settings for your twitter handle from your LinkedIn profile for instance. Maybe you like to show off your Twitter account, but think your LinkedIn resume is a bit too much. Or vice versa. We let you do it all.

Feb 9 2011

Hot Startup Looking for PHP Developer

We need your help! We are the hottest startup in town this week! TechCrunch. Mashable. UrbanDaddy. We are talking thousands of users signed up in a week. Word is spreading like wildfire.

We need a php developer to help us grow and implement all the features that our users expect and demand of us. We think it’s a great opportunity to be in on the action just when demand is taking of. Will we be the next Twitter? Who knows, but so far, growth is exciting and we’d like to share it with you.

Some technical details: we use the php Yii framework. It’s not hard to learn, so any good developer can get up to speed quickly, but if you have experience with it, even better. Other useful skills include the LinkedIn and Twitter APIs, but again, you can learn them in a day. You, ideally, are very much available and live in Silicon Valley. And can afford to forgo salary for a (short) amount of time. Because you are a risk taker and you like to build fun stuff that actually makes people’s lives better.

Interested? Email alain at letslunch.com

Feb 7 2011

Better than 90% Match Rate! Thank you all!

I was blown away by a stat today on LetsLunch.com: we successfully match more than 90% of everyone who applies for a lunch (in the San Francisco Bay Area — some people sneaked in from New York and LA and we don’t match them, but we will soon).

What this means for you: the old tactics of selecting every day of the week, hoping that one will work, is outdated. Only select the days you actually want to business network, because if you apply, we’ll match you up!

Feb 2 2011

Just Added Cool Feature: See Other Nearby Users on the Map

Thank you again for everyone for signing-up. As you know, we had 100 invites on TechCrunch, and get got filled instantly. So we bumped it up to 200, and still it filled up within minutes.

We have been busy working on the site and today I wanted to let you know about a cool improvement to the map: now you can see if there are other people nearby. We won’t tell you their names of their reputation just yet, but at least you know you are not alone!

Take a look at this view of Silicon Valley. It’s so great to have so many users already. Thanks again!

Remember, we’ll start scheduling lunches this Friday (Feb 4th). Make sure your reputation profile with all your accounts (Twitter, LinkedIn, Hacker News, Stack Overflow) is up to date so you get the best lunch possible!