What better way to kick off 2012 than with a proper developer challenge? We’re inviting all software developers, hackers, code slingers to get their API hats on and mash up Flattr in a new and incredible way.

This iPad 2 could be yours. Keep reading!

Back in November we released a new and improved Flattr API v2. We’ve now rooted out the bugs, written a proper documentation so here’s the challenge:

Build something using the new Flattr API, impress us with your idea and execution and take home a top of the line iPad 2.

It’s not about just great code, we’re searching for solutions that mash up the mobile/web and Flattr in new ways, in ways that our own development team hasn’t even thought of. Capiche?

Put Flattr into World of Warcraft so we can flattr those who help us with that can’t-do-it-on-my-own quest. Whip up a face recognition software that looks for matches between Facebook accounts and Flattr users. Sky’s the limit. You could take it easy and integrate Flattr into your web/mobile/cloud software, but who wants to play it safe?

A few simple rules

* Competition ends on 12 February, 2012 (midnight, GMT).
* You must use the new Flattr API (v2) in your project.
* To enter leave a comment to this blog post with a link to where we can find your solution and who’s the person or persons behind the project. Simple.
* It’s OK to submit both brand new and existing things.
* We at Flattr love and encourage open source but your project doesn’t have to be open source for this competition.
* Team submissions are encouraged but it’s up to the team how they split the prize.
* All questions regarding technical aspects of our API to be submitted via Stack Overflow.
* API and related documentation is up on developers.flattr.net/api/

The prizes

1st place – one top of the line 64GB iPad 2 if it’s a solo project. Two base line 16 GB iPad 2s if it’s a team effort.

Not an Apple fans? Winner can switch prize for a comparable Android tablet of their choice.

2 runner ups – Flattr tshirts and stickers


During the week after competition ends (13-19 February) our team + a few top Flattr users (Kai “SkaveRat” de Haan, Evan Schoepke, Tim Pritlove, Jürgen Geuter) will try out the solutions that have been submitted and pick the winner.

What are the judging criteria? Idea, execution, impact (what is the potential market for your solution, how disruptive it is) – but as we said before – a totally revolutionary idea might balance out mediocre technical solution, just like a solution with a huge impact could trump the fact that the idea in the first place was a very simple improvement.

We will announce the winning project and runners ups in our blog.

Launch that favorite editor and get cracking!

32 thoughts on “Developer Challenge, January edition – it’s a GO!

  1. Dear developers, please, please make a nice podcatcher with Flattr integration, so that I can flattr directly from the device while listening.

  2. A category of tools I might like to see people work on are things that make it more convenient to “manually“ submit content on sites like YouTube or Flickr which don’t provide any Flattr integration. Imagine a one-push operation that sends your content to Flattr and edits your posting on YouTube/Flickr/etc pointing back to the Flattr button.

  3. I integrated Flattr support into a custom iOS podcasting client for the “Games und so” podcast. The client parses the atom:link rel=”payment” for the auto submit url and uses Google’s gtm-oauth2 library to talk to the Flattr API.

    You can flattr podcast episodes right from the app while listening to the show.

    Screenshot: http://cl.ly/2y2c1c3V383u2N1c3i2j

    I submitted the update (Version 1.3) to the App Store today, so it should be approved by around February 10th.

    App Store link (Free App): http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/games-und-so/id460801763?ls=1&mt=8

  4. Let me present my contribution to the contest, The Flattr Video Browser.
    The site combines the power of OEmbed with the new Flattr API.
    It allows you to browse through trending videos on Flattr and watch them directly on the site!
    Vimeo, YouTube, justin.tv and many more are supported.

    The site also allow you to easily share your flattr;able video along with a Flattr button (http://flattr.kejsarmakten.se:8080/new/) on a permalink.
    This comes in handy since there is no way of embedding a Flattr button on either YouTube or Vimeo.

    I hope you like it! I really think it shows the potential in Flattr APIs search functions!

  5. I made a JavaScript wrapper/API client thingy! It’s up on GitHub. Still under development but pretty complete at the time of writing.

    It has helpers for authenticating and functions for every (soon) API resource.

    The goal is to make it work in both the browser and in a NodeJS environment. Only the Node client is writtin thus far. But will probably add a browser client tonight! :)

    You’ll find it on GitHub: https://github.com/simme/flattrjs
    It’s pretty well documented using Docco.

  6. I made an iPhone app for flattring the podcast you are currently listening to in Music.app – it was submitted about a week ago but unfortunately hasn’t yet been approved by Apple – the website is up at http://vu0.org/projects/FlattrPod/

    To make the thing possible, I wrote an Objective-C library for talking to Flattr, source code is available on GitHub: https://github.com/neonichu/FlattrKit

    Next stop is doing the same thing as a menu bar thing for the Mac, to flattr the podcast currently playing in iTunes.

  7. Since the rules don’t say anything about multiple entries I thought I’d mention my upcoming iOS app as well.

    It’s quite far from done (started this thursday…), but the concept is simple. Show a list of trending things from a given category. “Inspect” the thing. Open it in the browser etc etc. You’ll be able to connect to your own Flattr account and flattr things you find in the app!

    Perfect when you’re waiting for the buss or something! Further along I might implement support for changing sort order etc. Basically my goal is to make an app that makes it easy to browse the Flattr catalog and find interesting stuff, while flattring at the same time! From your mobile phone!

    You can view a little screen grab of it here http://cl.ly/2T3e1T05152B2p3w2S0W

    Some technical stuff, it’s 100% native Objective-C. I use RestKit (https://github.com/RestKit/RestKit) which I should totally Flattr because it’s awesome.

    If needed I can put the code up on GitHub, it’ll be open source all the way. Just haven’t gotten around to it since it’s so early in the development stages.

    Oh, and I call it MntFlattrest.

  8. Here Flattr has been used alongside a live mapping interface that highlights realtime occurrences being broadcast by civilian reporters. Achieved by extracting semantic value from natural language processing.


    Created by Petter Samuelsen @pettersamulsen
    Pierre Gomez @PISG

  9. I wrote FlatDrop, a Flattr & SoundCloud mashup. Fans can get access to the download of a track when they flattr it.

    You can setup your own tracks here

    And get the download to one of my tracks when you flattr me here:

    The whole thing still needs quite some polishing and testing, so I’m not sure it really should be in this competition already …

  10. Sometimes you have a question, but no answer. You are looking for someone to help you, because you need good advices, opinions, ideas or answers.

    fundd is a mashup on open-alpha status #1, which should allow Flattr users to Sign In with their Flattr Account (OAuth2) to connect their profile with Flattr.

    There’ll be “Flattr” button not only for those people who have questions but also for those who’re searching for answers.
    Next weeks there’ll be some updates on buttons, things, the voting-system and the public profile.

    Besides, I think a Q&A platform is better, if people can earn some money..
    The voting system will make fundd more interesting: It will be easier to discover interesting questions, answers, different opinions and ideas!

    fundd, the new social funding and discovering platform: http://fundd.de/

    Sign In now with your Flattr Account, create your Profile, earn Points by asking and answering questions! That simple it is (:

    The question-system is one module of fundd. The second big module will be published in february (maybe next weekend).
    fundd will be a platform for “Creative People” & “Creative Discoverers”. It will change the meaning of Social Funding. I hope. I’m sure.

    More informations about fundd? Visit fundd.de – to keep informed follow @funddiscover http://twitter.com/funddiscover

    Created by Ahmet Topal, @ahmet2106

  11. Phones + Flattr = Phlattr! :D


    This is a proof of concept for integrating text messaging for Flattring individual’s via their phone numbers. Meet someone, like their ideas, Flattr them via an SMS message. Someone helps you on the side of the road, txt in some gratitude via Phlattr!

    Currently you can attach your phone to your account via an OAuth’d site. The pieces are in place for the actual txt’ing of Flattr’s, but I got blocked on some Tropo bugs that need researching with their team.

    Hopefully the concept makes sense, and the code is a starting point. :)

  12. All right, I admit defeat — I was attempting to create a (simple) way for Second Life users to flattr locations inside the virtual world. Objects inside Second Life act as tiny Web servers, and they allow both outgoing and incoming HTTP requests. Unfortunately, there are serious limitations in terms of memory (just 16-64 KBytes of scripting ability, and message passing cannot exceed 255-1024 bytes, depending on the string type), so it means using an external Web gateway to actually handle the requests and communicate back to Second Life.

    Even more harder to do is to rely on a heavily-JavaScripted page that constitues the authentication procedure. Almost all “button”-type protocols on the Web assume that the user has a Web browser in front of themselves and thus can safely type a login and a password. Not so in Second Life: there is just message passing, good enough for authentication protocols which just rely on some sort of encoding, but that do not “assume” special capabilities (like requiring a human being behind a JS-enabled browser who is typing passwords on a screen).

    This almost always requires a separate authentication procedure (which is, indeed, done by a user on a browser) and a way of passing authentication tokens back to a “simple-minded” device which uses HTTP perfectly but has no concept of HTML.

    When doing that, of course, redirection occurs (the user authenticates on a browser, but the actual juicy bits are being done elsewhere, where the concept of an HTML page doesn’t exist), which will be sensed as an interception attack and OAuth2 will almost certainly fail (because, well, it is a form of illegitimate authentication — tokens are being used on a client with different IP addresses and identifying themselves as different clients). I’ve tried to cleverly outsmart the system with two attempts: 1) Use a proprietary protocol to do flattr authentication “on behalf” of a Second Life user; this pretty much means replicating the whole of Flattr and keeping both in sync. Way too much work. 2) Do the authentication on a regular browser, but use an extra parameter on the callback to serve results back to a Second Life object. Sadly there is no easy way to do that; from my limited experience, there seems to be no way to pass “extra” parameters to a callback set as an endpoint.

    I’ve been reading that the “state” parameter is sometimes used by OAuth2 implementations to accomplish exactly that, but I’m afraid I’ve run out of time for the competition to experiment to see if Flattr does, indeed, use the state parameter or not.

    Oh well. It was a pity I just learned about this competition earlier this week — I’m sure that if I had watched it from the start, I’d have done something worthwhile. I love to do tiny gadgets integrating Second Life with external websites :)

    Good luck for the (few) competitors, I’ve seen some of your work and it looks awesome!

  13. Oh wow, a great list of submissions, thanks all! We’re going through them one by one now, having all the judges come back with their lists and feedback and then figuring out who the winner is :)

    Current plan to announce early next week. Stay tuned and meanwhile test each other’s solutions and give feedback. That’s the best way to improve your things.

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