Venmo Hangs with Braintree and Singly at App Challenge Chicago
· by Venmo
Engineers from team Venmo were delighted to participate in App Challenge Chicago, hosted by Singly and Braintree this past weekend. The goal of the hackathon, which was open to the public, was to bring together members of the Chicago tech community, entrepreneurs, designers and developers, to help take ideas from a pitch to a launchable product in just one day.
We are happy to announce that several of the projects developed at the hackathon used the Venmo API and our Software Development Kit (SDK). The winning project and the recipient of a cash prize, paid via Venmo of course, was “Forgift” an electronic version of the traditional birthday card with check enclosed. Other hacks include: “Blackmail For Friends (BFF),” which lets you post an embarrassing video and charge your friends to keep the link a secret, and zRacyBike a bike racing app that lets you make a bet and pay the winner via Venmo. Click here for a complete list of hacks.
In addition to the cool projects, the event also provided Venmo engineers with a chance to chill with our partners at Braintree and learn about their office culture. Our engineers dined on some of the best Chicago burgers and fries, and jousted with swords and scooters while they waited for their code to compile. Our own Danny Cosson spent his downtime flying a toy helicopter around the office: “that was a highlight for me,” he said.
On behalf of all of us here at Venmo, we want to thank Braintree and Singly for hosting the event. For more information about how you can build on the Venmo SDK and integrate payments into your app, check out our API page.
Venmo Hackathon: Winners and Honorable Mentions
· by Venmo
A lot of companies do Hackathons, and Venmo is no exception. What is exceptional, however, is the talent and comradery that emerged during the wee hours last Wednesday night. A poker app, picture uploader, social payment infographics, and many other cool projects all built string by string through the exploration and utilization of Venmo’s digital architecture.
The winning project, although we are all winners here at Venmo, was built by engineers Peyton, Staub (Andrew) and Christine. They built a poker app called PotBot that let’s you create and manage a poker pool and cash out with Venmo. Needless to say, the team was stoked to put this app into action.
Honorable mentions include, Venmo Goals, the server infrastructure for a Venmo picture uploader (coming soon to the general public), and the Make It Rain app.
Venmo Goals (pictured above) is an app that helps you hold your friends accountable to their resolutions. A user chooses a goal and then up to four sponsors. When the user acknowledges that s/he has “tripped up” on their goals, the app randomly selects a single support to receive a small Venmo payment.
The Make it Rain app, showers your friends with dollars electronically, via Venmo. Just open the app, pick a friend and, with a swipe of your finger, you can make it rain one Venmo dollar at a time.
Hackathons certainly bring out the creativity in people. What ideas do you have for a hack built using Venmo? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for a chance to have your app idea featured on our blog or built during one of our next hackathons.
Venmo's First Hackathon
· by Venmo
Last Friday we held our first (of many more to come) 36-hour hackathon. We had a blast, learned a lot, and slept a little. Here’s a summary of the hacks we created!
Kortina, Shreyans, and Staub at a team meeting on Thursday morning
Venmo Live by Shreyans and Julian
It displays a map of the US (via Google Maps) and, in real time, drops a pin on the location of where a new payment occurs and where a new signup happens. The map resizes itself based on clusters of nearby payments. We’re getting an extra display for this office so we can always have this on!
a screenshot from Venmo Live
Timeflies iPhone app by Matt H and Matt D
Keep track of the Timeflies band with this free iPhone app. Watch their newest Youtube videos and follow their tweets with the app. Show your support for Timeflies by Venmo-ing in the app! It’s even open-sourced on github! Now you can finally pay them back for watching Under the Sea for the umpteenth time.
the Timeflies iPhone app in action
Commit Driven Development by Alan
You’ve heard about test driven development and maybe even readme driven development. But Alan takes it to an even higher level with commit driven development. Don’t let your followers down! Write commits before they happen to keep you on track, productive, and ahead of the trend!
Mobot by Kortina
Manage your tests and commits through gchat! When commits are pushed to the team, notifications are sent out through a team gchat and tests are automatically executed. Additionally, changes can be automatically deployed by using the mobot command in gchat. Things totally just got real.
a screenshot of the team gchat after code commits
Venmo Poker Night by Andrew Staub
Collect buy-ins and pay out winners with this app! After you clean them out, it’s even easier for them to buy back in. Watch the people join the table and stop that one guy from playing without paying.. You know who he is! Refer him to this open-sourced code on github!
Blackberry Venmo App by Jesse and John
The Blackberry app is almost done and Jesse and John learned the joy of developing for Blackberry’s. It can be best (and most accurately) explained through this comedic blog post. Though they only reached about step 40, they now have a deep respect for Blackberry developers. If you’re on a Blackberry, stay tuned for the app! Slow and steady wins the race!
Venmocorp Reimburse by Iqram
One of the many perks at Venmo is instant reimbursement for office supplies and team goods. To keep it neat and tidy, Reimburse categorizes payments and makes it even easier to get reimbursed. As an extra bonus, it has a shnazzy background too. Unfortunately it’s only an internal tool, but we thought you readers would be proud.
And final props to Venmo Underground by Jenny! Our support tools used to be a complex combination of Assistly, Asana, and email. But with Venmo Underground, it’s a one-stop shop for everything, and it looks phenomenal. Never before will helping our users be as easy as it is fun :)
a picture from late Thursday night
Venmo’s First Hackathon was a total domination! If you have any suggestions for us at the next Hackathon, contact us at email@example.com.
We closed out Friday night with demos and catered Sri Lankan food. It was a smashing success! Somewhere buried in our phones is a picture of Iqram and Kortina sleeping on the bed. Let’s hope it resurfaces. At one point, I could have sworn that I saw Julian go for his 3rd Chipotle burrito in those 2 days. And at 2:15am on Friday morning, the team eagerly did the most energetic shake down I’ve ever experienced. That’s Venmo, and we love what we do :)
Want to help us brew cool stuff at the Venmo labs? Check out our jobs page.
Venmo API Hackathon
· by Venmo
We’re hosting a hackathon at Venmo HQ Frday, 23 Apr starting at 3PM.
Please come join us if you’re interested in learning about and playing with Venmo API v1. Bring your own ideas if you have them, or if you don’t, learn about the apps our users are begging for someone to build. Our friends from DuckDuckGo are joining us, so it should be tons of fun!
Hackers, entrepreneurs, students, and Philly startup-ers are all welcome to come hang out for the afternoon and stick around for an evening BBQ.
See you all soon!
RSVP on Meetup.com
Quicktip: "bal" command
· by Venmo
Here’s an easy way to recover your Venmo username on the go if you’ve forgotten it: text “bal” to Venmo at 646.863.9557. The response text will give you your account balance and username. This is handy if you want a friend to pay you and can’t remember your account name. Of course, you can always invoice someone by texting “$__ from [username/phone number]” to Venmo!
Got any questions, comments, or feedback? As always, let us know on Twitter.
Venmo Wins Mobile Monday Mid Atlantic Demo Night
· by Venmo
Monday, we got a chance to present at Mobile Monday Demo Night, where we shared Venmo with a great crowd and helped the Relief Foundation raise some money for their project to build an orphanage in Haiti.
On January 25th, Venmo presented at Mobile Monday Mid Atlantic Demo Night, a gathering of the top mobile technology companies in the region.
Venmo won this annual competition by engaging the audience in the most interactive presentation of the evening. The founders, Andrew Kortina and Iqram Magdon-Ismail, spent only 2 of their 5 minute presentation explaining the company, which allows anyone to send or collect money by sending a text message. Citing the recent campaign by the Red Cross that engaged thousands of people and raised millions of dollars for relief efforts in Haiti in only a few days, they explained that now anyone can collect money in a similar way via Venmo’s text message payments service.
For the remaining 3 minutes of the presentation, Kortina and Magdon asked the audience to try the product by making live donations to the Relief Foundation, an organization sending a delegate of 120 people to Haiti to build an orphanage. Audience members texted “pay relief 20 to help haiti” to the Venmo number (646.863.9557) and were able to contribute hundreds of dollars in a matter of minutes. In less than a week, the Relief Foundation has raised over $15,000 through Venmo text message donations, $600 of which was raised in the 3 minute demo during the presentation.
In order to engage communities around organizations and businesses accepting Venmo mobile payments, the service also integrates tightly with social networking services like Twitter and Facebook, allowing people, businesses, and charities to share their favorite donations and payments to favorite local spots with their friends on these networks.
To learn more about accepting Venmo as a non-profit or a business, please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Learn more about Venmo for Non-Profit organizations here: Accept text message donations for non-profit organizations