1-800-555-TELL November 30, 2000 6:19 PM   Subscribe

Hey Matt, I called in, but I don't get it.. What's so funny?

dial 1-800-555-TELL, say "extensions", dial or say "97841"

posted by PWA_BadBoy to MetaFilter-Related at 6:19 PM (18 comments total)

Am I missing something or am I just stupid?
posted by PWA_BadBoy at 6:21 PM on November 30, 2000

Never mind... Jason's got the full instructions on his site
posted by PWA_BadBoy at 6:37 PM on November 30, 2000

Wow.. that's NEAT... how does that 1-800-555-TELL thing work anyway?? Is it database driven??

BTW matt, might help if you put the word "then" after "extensions"... cuz the phrase is a bit ambiguous.

posted by PWA_BadBoy at 6:44 PM on November 30, 2000

Ok, I added more instructions. It's pretty cool if you're a developer, Tellme.com releases an open XML api to their application.

Check out studio.tellme.com, and take a look at the demo apps. You can do some amazing stuff with it.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 7:11 PM on November 30, 2000

By the way, to write this took me about fifteen minutes. I simply took this:


and tweaked it to become this:


Then you setup TellMe to fetch that URL when people call the extension. It's amazing and very easy.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 7:13 PM on November 30, 2000

Very cool. I'm gonna have to put learning XML on my long list of things to do. Thanks for the links, Matt. Keep up the good work. :D
posted by PWA_BadBoy at 7:46 PM on November 30, 2000

Wow, very cool! :) But, um, I'm getting HORRIBLE static on the line. Ew.
posted by pnevares at 10:03 PM on November 30, 2000

>I'm getting HORRIBLE static on the line.

I guess the signal-to-noise ratio of Metafilter on the phone isn't much better than that of the Web version.
posted by jkottke at 4:47 PM on December 1, 2000

buh-dum-bump! (rimshot)

jason will be here all week folks! be sure to tip your waitress!
posted by mathowie (staff) at 7:00 PM on December 1, 2000

Just a question (a pretty innocent one, but please show understanding).

Do the phones in the US have letters too? (how is someone supposed to dial 'TELL')?

And another thing: is it possible to call this service using Net2Phone's software? (They allow me to make calls for free in the US, as far as I know)
posted by kchristidis at 3:47 AM on December 2, 2000

Phones in the US and Canada have letters assigned to numbers. So 1 will represent A B and/or C, 2 is D E and/or F, etc, with some numbers getting an extra letter.

I don't remember the exact mappings off-hand, and don't have a phone handy to look, but for some reason I think the letters actually start at 2. I don't know why, and I'm probably wrong.

The way I understand Net2Phone works is that it dials out from a local (to the number you're dialing) phone in the States, so yes, you should be able to.
posted by cCranium at 10:12 AM on December 2, 2000

I tried this with dialpad, my favorite no-business-model-free-phone-thingy-that-probably-has-200-employees-and-is-going-to-lay-half-of-them-off-to-cut-costs, but it was busy each and every time I tried to call it.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 12:11 PM on December 2, 2000

I see. Thanks guys, I'm gonna try it.
Just a last question: Let's assume that 1=A,B,C & 2=D,E,F .If I want to write 'AFA', I will dial 12221 ?
posted by kchristidis at 2:28 AM on December 3, 2000

For a phone number that tells you to dial 'AFA' you would dial '121', one number for every letter.

The only time you would need to press a number more than once for a letter is if you're using the phone's keypad to enter data into, say, a cellphone's phone book.
posted by cCranium at 4:54 AM on December 3, 2000

Ok. Thanks, I'll try it!
posted by kchristidis at 8:34 AM on December 4, 2000

Okay, then you probably want the actual letter-to-number mapping, and unlike cC, I actually have a phone at my desk. (It's right here next to my manual typewriter.)

ABC = 2
DEF = 3
GHI = 4
JKL = 5
MNO = 6
PRS = 7
TUV = 8
WXY = 9

There's no "Q" or "Z" under this system, mind you, but who cares?
posted by webmutant at 12:11 PM on December 7, 2000

The mapping for Q and Z differs depending on whom you listen to. Originally, of course, there wasn't one.

Then Northern Telecom put Q, Z, and " " on the 1 key.

Now, AT&T and others are doing PQRS and WXYZ on 7 and 9... notwithstanding the fact that this will break some 'dial by name' directories on phone systems. Eediots.

Worse, someone tells me that this is a new ITU-T standard, though, as usual, no one can specify the standard number.
posted by baylink at 1:33 PM on December 8, 2000

The marketing people took my phone away.

I'm not kidding, either. The sales-side of the dot-com I'm developing for moved in with all us geeks and there weren't enough phones to go around, so mine (and some of the other programmers) got donated to people who actually make more than one call a month. :-)
posted by cCranium at 6:09 PM on December 8, 2000

« Older cCranium talks about the weirdness of having his...   |   it'd be nice to have a link back to MetaFilter... Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments