Managing Lights and Plugs Made Easy for Developers With Taapi’s API

“…Taapi is gamification at it’s best.” Wired 
“The game is the first global, mobile gaming platform that will have a significant impact on the real-world.”

Taapi provides the first, open-source, global, all-purpose energy management API for developers.  

We believe that users should be able to control their light and wall sockets from their favorite applications and that app developers and game builders should be able to incorporate light and wall socket controls into their applications.
Managing lights and plugs has typically been an expensive, proprietary domain using closed source systems. Producers of light and wallsocket controllers do not allow wide developer access to their products in the home or integration of their in-home products with third-party applications.

How Taapi Works
We build wallsocket adapters and smart lightbulbs that operate using a commercial-grade protocol and low-energy WiFi chipset.
Through our smart bulbs and wall socket adpaters we create secure communication between lights and wall sockets to power lights and sockets on and turn them off.
The Taapi systems handle authentication of users devices, auth of user ID’s in your apps via OAuth and creating a completely masked identity for a user’s devices for security.
Taapi also maintains a constant record of state that recalls the state a socket or light was in when it was acted upon by Taapi. Maintaining states ensures that the light or wall socket can be returned to it’s original state when a user wants to regain full control of their lights or wall sockets.

Taapi employs commercial-grade standards in it’s open-source APIs.

Multiple devices can be run off of a Taapi wallsocket.  Lightbulbs can be used for hardwired lights, like overheads.

Taapi creates local WiFi communication between sockets and bulbs by using a hub that connects to your router. The hub communicates securely with the Taapi service and the light’s owner. The Taapi service exposes REST services to developers.

Taapi Cloud Services for Developers

The Taapi Cloud and Service Paths

Easy Integration for iOS, Android and OUYA Enabled Games

Integration with Taapi is optimized for speed and ease of set-up.
Libraries for iOS, Android and a rapid-setup, special build set of classes for OUYA will be available to developers. Integration with Taapi is optimized for speed and ease of set-up.

The Taapi Social Game
The Taapi API is now used to power a social game where unused lights are added to a pool of anonymous lights waiting to be turned off. Players race to turn off lights as they are added to the pool. This game leverages many parts of the API such as session establishment, auth and lights and plug management.
The first Taapi game is available on iOS, Android and the OUYA game console.

The Taapi Social Game

What will the Taapi API offer developers?
Taapi manages the heavy lifting that devs typically associate with environmental controls: hardware, normalization, security, WiFi protocols and local network authentication
We manage those pain points and provide the dev with a manageable API that they can leverage as the dev, and their users, see fit.
Taapi has tools to provide access to a range of game and app developers by providing a full REST API with hooks that can programmatically act on Taapi’s services from your app or service.
The Taapi API will provide access for app and game devs to features such as:

  • Adding new players
  • Authenticating players
  • Calling player stats
  • Calling general country, energy, and date stats
  • Initiating a race session
  • Obtaining the stats for a unique race session
  • Polling for available races

Taapi has selected Atlassian ( products for community support, Mashery ( for API hosting and Taapi has built-in an OpenSocial container for developers to write gadgets for Taapi using the OpenSocial ( standard.

Taapi’s OpenSocial container support will allow developers to quickly and easily write OpenSocial compliant gadgets that can call and serve a number of Taapi features like public Taapi use statistics, aggregated stats, individual users stats and game session availability.

The Taapi OpenSocial container will support gadget authentication via OAuth to enable personalized, contextual player information and interaction as well.  Players will be able to add approved gadgets to their instances of the Taapi game and extend Taapi’s functionality.
For example, a developer could write a ‘My Country’ Taapi gadget to alert a player when a session in a specific country is available, authenticate them, opt them into the game session and tweet about their participation, all in that country’s native language(s).

Taapi founder Carol Glennon states, “Support for an accelerated development process was one of our top goals for the Taapi platform. Enabling gadgets through our OpenSocial container makes it easy for developers to gain fast access to our API while writing cool gadgets that users can use in Taapi right away.”

Access to the Taapi API will also be available on Zapier, a service that syncs many different web apps. A developer can use Taapi and Zapier to initiate a number of web actions for example, setting a block of time that lights should be turned off for a user when they schedule a calendar event in the devs application.

Taapi Partners and Community Services for Developers

We Are Counting on YOU
We need your support as a backer now to produce the lightbulbs and wallsockets that will be used in thousands of your users homes and offices.
Enabling us to produce our home kits provides you as a developer with an ever-widing pool of users that are ready to use Taapi with your app and games.

Please come and back us today and pick a great reward. It’s inexpensive, fast and will benefit your app or game greatly.

Taapi Team Experience
The Taapi core executive team have been working on projects together for over a decade and have experienced amazing success in that time. Together, they have a pretty cool history of ability to deliver amazing experiences. Examples of previous work includes delivering mobile apps, games as well as cutting edge and complex 3D animations and solutions for major consumer-focused companies including Time Warner, Intel, CBS, California Tourism, Delta Airlines and National Geographic.

We have been recognized and received over a dozen National and International awards for our work and have been at the cutting edge of technology for a combined four decades.

2012 National Geographic Kids Almanac
2011 Visit California iPad application
2011 San Francisco Giants and Safeway2011 San Francisco Giants and Safeway
2011 MLB, 7Eleven and Frito Lay
2010 Stevie award – Most Innovative Company  of the Year
2010 World Cup through FIFA backed 1Goal
2004 Who Wants To Be A Millionaire U.K. (mBlox)

Author: Carol Glennon

OpenSocial Overview, part 2

The OpenSocial gadgets specification includes multiple APIs that make it easy to authenticate users and access data and core functions on participating social networks. We featured an OpenSocial infographic here as part of our two-part shout out to the folks at OSCON.
Platforms that have OpenSocial compliant application containers can run OpenSocial gadgets, sometimes called ‘plug-ins’. Some of the companies that support OpenSocial plugins in their public environments are: Atlassian (known for JIRA, Confluence and other great systems), SAP, IBM,, SugarCRM, Yahoo!, Google and many more. These platforms run Apache Shindig to create the container that supports OpenSocial gadgets. The evolution of Shindig is Apache Rave. See the end of this post for more on Apache Shindig and Rave.

This sample will demonstrate a sample of a formed XML gadget descriptor and a live-test. Every gadget is made up of an XML descriptor that calls on functions that the Apache Shindig server supports.

Step 1. get the sample.
In this example we give you a sample XML gadget descriptor here: XML Gadget Descriptor. Download and save it if you want to try the test yourself and have a code sample to alter later.
The main function areas of this sample are: module prefs, user prefs, get and display. The entire OpenSocial gadget specification is here. (Updated, now 2.5)
This sample calls and displays a feed of news articles and relies upon the function.

Step 2. decide to host the sample or use our URL.
Either download the XML sample and place it on a publicly accessible URL of your own or use our URL in step 4 of the demo.

Step 3.  test the sample live.
Testing your XML Gadget descriptor is important.
Yahoo! has a sandbox for live OpenSocial plug-ins and it only takes a couple of minutes to set-up. Head to and sign up for a dev account, don’t worry-it’s free.
Log in and head to “My Projects”, select “New Project”, choose type “YAP” (Yahoo! Application Project), select “Import New XML”.
Either paste in your own URL that points to the XML sample you downloaded in Step 1. or point to our sample URL, select “Import”.

Step 4. Preview the sample.
Select “Preview” to view the sample as a formed gadget. This is how your gadget will look for users.

A couple of notes about testing with the Yahoo! live sandbox, Yahoo requires a category parameter and value in the module preferences. Without the category parameter the descriptor will generate errors.  You can remove this parameter after testing if need be.

 title="Google Gadget Dev News"

Here is an example of this OpenSocial example gadget in the SAP StreamWork application.

Example gadget in SAP Streamwork application

You can use OpenSocial to deliver many types of social data to your users quickly and easily as well as authenticate them for interactions with social data. Customizations and functions for the OpenSocial standard are extensive and growing.

Here are a few ways that you can get started:

View a tutorial.

Become  an “OpenSocial container” by using Apache Rave to host social apps.

Contribute to the evolution of the OpenSocial specification or become an OpenSocial Foundation member.

Follow @opensocial.

Author Carol Glennon

Audi R8

Hashtag Marketing Tips Featuring M80’s Joe Quattrone and Audi

Hashtags are quickly becoming a social media calling card for leading agencies and their Fortune 500 clients. M80, one such agency, is a good example with it’s 2011 Super Bowl campaign and the unique hashtag #ProgressIs.

We asked M80‘s Joe Quattrone, Account Lead for Audi of America’s social media business and Senior Account Director at M80 about the campaigns they have run for Audi and got some general best practices for utilizing hashtags.

Joe also explores their newest campaign for Audi and tells us how you can raise your hand for a chance to fly out and drive an Audi R8 at Sonoma’s Infineon Raceway in California or have an R8 delivered to your doorstep.
One hint, I really #WantAnR8.

Q: Audi is a featured client of M80, what media channels does the agency support for Audi?

  • As social media agency of record for Audi of America we manage multiple communities.  While the focus lies with Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube we cultivate content and create tone of voice for roughly seven additional networks.
  • Some of the other networks we manage include: Flickr, Google+, Instagram, Stumbleupon, Tumblr, Empire Avenue, and foursquare.

Q: Tell us about the execution of the Audi Progressive Luxury Trade Up Contest?

  • “Luxury Has Progressed.” This simple but powerful message was the punch line of a 60-second action-packed spot “Release the Hounds,” which made its debut during Super Bowl XLV. The spot was created by our partner agency Venables Bell and Partners, and it told the story of two men attempting an escape from a luxury prison ends with a twist: Bill makes a getaway in an Audi A8 while the hoodwinked Lancaster wins a chauffeured ride back to prison in a Mercedes S Class.
  • The spot took many pointed jabs at the symbols of old luxury. But it stopped short of fully defining the concept of progressive luxury. For that, Audi decided to turn to our social communities. We wanted to create a conversation on the topic of old versus new that would engage Audi customers, fans and car enthusiasts alike. And, so, we called on the Twittersphere to help us define progress.


  • We developed a comprehensive communications strategy around Twitter and a unique hashtag, #ProgressIs. To achieve the level of integration and visibility necessary for success, we supported the #ProgressIs campaign with earned, bought and owned media.
  • The Audi Progressive Luxury Trade-Up contest was born: A Twitter contest that tied thematically with the spot and extended its message. Audi supported the #ProgressIs contest with the groundbreaking concept of appending the hashtag to the Super Bowl commercial. And to build buzz before the commercial, Audi purchased the Promoted Trend #ProgressIs on Twitter on the Thursday before Super Bowl.
  • In the contest, we asked consumers to submit their definitions of what #ProgressIs via a microsite (, from which people could submit their 140-character entries. During the second phase, in a head-to-head tweet-off, the top 10 contestants were assigned “old luxury” goods and had an opportunity to trade up to “progressive luxury” prizes. They campaigned with Retweets and creatively used Twitpics, blogs and YouTube videos to further spark conversation. The Grand Prize was a $25,000 charitable donation and a trip to the Audi Sportscar Experience at Infineon Raceway.
  • Audi public relations played an important role in getting the media and consumers talking about Audi’s innovative use of the hashtag in its Super Bowl commercial – a first ever.

Q: The Audi campaign hashtag that was developed for the 2011 Super Bowl, #ProgressIs, received more than 27,000 mentions. What makes Twitter campaigns that lead with a hashtag successful?

  • It really depends on if the television spot in question is tied to a major event.  Having used hashtags at the end of two consecutive Super Bowl spots we’re starting to notice a strong correlation between the creative itself and the kind of conversation that can be started on Twitter when prompted.
  • With a major cultural event like the Super Bowl or the Academy Awards hashtags work very well because the user behavior lines up nicely.  There are already tens of thousands of micro conversations going on in Twitter during the event so really you wind up injecting your creative concept into the conversation for people to debate openly.
  • It is also very important to know beforehand what you are looking to achieve with your spot before deciding to use a tag over a URL. If adding buzz to your creative is your goal, a tag during a big event is likely to enhance your chances of gaining that additional conversation.

Q: What general demographic groups are considered knowledgeable enough about Twitter for a hashtag campaign?

  • Once upon a time Twitter was a network used by an exclusive demographic, but I think all of that is changing along with smartphone adoption. Younger, tech savvy, lives in major cities, educated, early adopters are some adjectives that one could have used to talk about who is on Twitter.
  • Nowadays, mobile adoption is so pertinent that social networks like Twitter are becoming more useful and relevant to a wider segment of society.
  • This year’s #SoLongVampires hashtag was also very highly engaged with and we didn’t wrap in a contest like we did last year, which tells us that the overall conversation is growing on Twitter.  This goes a long way towards making that channel a viable solution for campaigns.

Q: What advertising media fit best when considering use of a Twitter hashtag?

  • Right now major Television “live” events are proving to be very valuable
  • Television in general is proving to be important, but time and practice will tell how effective it can be used
  • After that I think you have to look at using hashtags in online video and OOH (billboards and experiential marketing) One thing to note is that hashtags on billboards would be best suited in major cities where foot traffic is your audience as opposed to on highways where vehicle traffic is your audience.

Q: Part of the Progress Is campaign featured a “Tweet Off” between users. Does peer-to-peer help to propel campaign messages faster and farther than a brand controlling every interaction would?

  • It can but it really depends what your brand is and who your audience is.  We enjoy the benefit of being able to talk to a very tech savvy consumer, and tech savvy consumers generally have pretty good scale when it comes to their social graph.

Q: What new Audi social media campaigns from M80 should we watch for?

  • M80 created a campaign back in September 2011 that was more of a reaction to one of our Twitter followers desire to drive an Audi R8
  • She tweeted at us for several months last summer about how much she wanted one that eventually she coined the term #WantAnR8
  • We actually seized the opportunity and decided getting a select few people behind the wheel of an R8 could create massive buzz so we arrived on her doorstep with an R8 for her to drive for the weekend.
  • Next, we took our video footage and purchased a promoted trend on Twitter and asked people far and wide why they #WantAnR8
  • That hashtag was the third most successful promoted trend of all time and we actually wound up with tens of thousands of people raising their hands and engaging with the hashtag.
  • Audi selected four more Twitter users based on creativity and allowed them a chance to drive an R8 for the weekend.
  • This March, that campaign is evolving to become part of a new campaign called “Legendary R8” which plays on the notion that the R8 came out of the gates as a legend and didn’t take a century to build on its reputation. #WantAnR8 fits in nicely as a campaign extension because it plays of the raw desire of Audi fans.
  • #WantAnR8 is now going to be seen on TV, online video, and other media properties
  • For the balance of 2012 we will be selecting more Twitter hand raisers and either providing them with a weekend drive or they have the option of being flown out to Sonoma California where they can drive R8’s around Infineon Raceway.
Audi R8

Audi R8, photo courtesy of M80.

About M80

M80 ( is the leading social media-marketing agency to Fortune 500 companies. We maximize a brand’s investment in social media and ignite their social ecosystem to increase brand engagement across multiple channels. Our programs empower consumer evangelists, create affinity and build community. Solutions include social network channel management, conversation marketing, social listening and analysis, interaction optimization, influencer outreach, video seeding and content syndication. Since 1998, the company has worked with hundreds of clients, offering innovative solutions and producing quantifiable ROI. M80 is a founding member of the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA) and was acquired by WPP’s GroupM in 2006 (LSE: WPP and NASDAQ: WPPGY). The company is headquartered in Los Angeles with offices in New York, Chicago, Seattle and Washington DC.

About Joe Quattrone

Joe Quattrone is the account lead on Audi of America’s social media business.  He joined the team in August following successful stints as account director on several other clients of M80 including GSK, Powermat, Intercontinental Hotel Group, and Tim Horton’s. Prior to joining M80 he served as an on-site account manager for Audi of America’s lead creative agency Venables Bell & Partners.  While on-site for VB&P Joe was integral in drafting Audi of America’s first social media strategy, leading to the eventual social media cross-functional task force that exists today. Joe has a deep level of passion for brands, which was one of the motivating factors in his decision to attend the VCU Brandcenter from 2006 to 2008 where he obtained an MS in Creative Brand Management. He currently lives in New York City with his wife Lea Anne.

Author Carol Glennon