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Web Interface needed for backend Asterisk Database - How to/Best Practices?

Posted on 2013-05-16
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Last Modified: 2013-06-14
Hi,

I'm a web designer by trade but I have a client who has asked me to help him out in an area that I know nothing about, hence I'm here!

My client uses an asterisk predictive dialer to make automated telephone calls using VOIP.

http://www.asteriskservice.com/asterisk/opensource-solutions/vicidial.html

The client wants to allow his clients (medical offices), to use a web-interface whereby they login, and setup appointment reminders for their patients. This interface relays the information to the asterisk predictive dialer & it makes the phonecalls to the patients reminding them of their appointment time & date.

My main question is, what is the best way to accomplish this?

I spoke to a programmer friend briefly & he suggested the following:

Language: Any of PHP, Java, Ruby or Perl would probably do the job.
Security: HTTPS, secure application certificate.
Duration: 2 to 3 weeks
Cost: $100 an hour through an agency

Does this sound about right?

What other concerns should I be paying attention to?
Is their any advantage using one language over another?
I'm going to post this job, what requirements should I include that I may have overlooked?

Any info that will allow me make a more informed decision is really appreciated.
Thanks.
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Question by:rockmonsters
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Accepted Solution

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Ray Paseur earned 2000 total points
ID: 39172339
You might want to learn about Twilio.  The implementation of the backend scripts will be much easier with their abstraction layer!
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Expert Comment

by:gr8gonzo
ID: 39172449
1. You should ask your client whether they are using a hosted Asterisk service or if they have an on-premise PBX. If they are using a hosted service, you may have to contact the provider to see if they will allow you to interact with the database or with the Vicidial API.

2. Pushing the data to the dialer might not be very difficult, but you should make sure you have enough time to cover the web portal for the medical offices (design, login system, data import/input, hosting, etc...).
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Author Comment

by:rockmonsters
ID: 39172572
Thanks gr8, those are great suggestions.
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Author Comment

by:rockmonsters
ID: 39172590
Ray, are you suggesting that I dismiss the asterisk database completely & use Twilio as an alternate solution?

Or are you saying that twilio can be used as the interface to the backend asterisk?
Sorry, I'm not a programmer, so this is pretty alien to me.
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LVL 111

Expert Comment

by:Ray Paseur
ID: 39173528
In my experience, Twilio provides an abstraction layer over the Asterisk engine.  It is (almost amazingly) easy to use.  I think you should consider it as an alternate solution.
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Author Comment

by:rockmonsters
ID: 39175728
Unfortunately Ray Twilio don't have a contact number or sales team to even figure out if it would be an appropriate solution. I find that strange, they're trying to sell a product, but as far as I can see they have no support team or sales team.
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LVL 111

Expert Comment

by:Ray Paseur
ID: 39175752
Twilio has excellent support and very knowledgeable people.  Please contact Keith Casey. https://twitter.com/CaseySoftware

Tell him that I saw your question on Experts Exchange and I sent you!  Twilio was recently profiled as a "telecom disruptor" by CNBC.
http://www.cnbc.com/id/100637276
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