Introducing SkypeIt – Command Line Skype Phone Calls

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SkypeIt

In short npm install -g skypeit and enjoy quickly jumping on conference calls.

What is it?

A simple little command line utility that can be used to efficiently jump on a conference call and automatically dials the extension or conference ID.

What pain does this solve?

I’ve recently been working on a number of projects where often times more than twice a day I have to jump on a conference bridge.

This typically involves:

  1. Opening the Outlook appointment
  2. Copying just the conference phone number (without extension)
  3. Pasting it in Skype to dial
  4. While Skype is dialing, I go back to Outlook and copy the extension/conference id.
  5. Pasting in Skype’s number pad area
  6. Type or use the mouse to press the final # key.

How does SkypeIt improve this?

SkypeIt takes the 6 steps and cuts them in half or more.

  1. Open the Outlook appointment
  2. Copy the conference phone number & extension (if there is one) in one shot.
  3. At the (already open command line – because we developers usually have a command line open) paste in skypeit "<paste here>" <press enter>

The problem this solves may seem like a first world problem, but a big annoyance factor when running through the original steps to get on a conference call is, people who setup these meetings, rarely include the final # sign needed at the end of a conference ID/extension #. So when I paste the extension into Skype, I still have to manually get the # in there.

SkypeIt even better with teams!

If you work remotely as I do, then you’re probably communicating through things like HipChat, Skype, Slack, AOL (I-kid, I-kid), etc. Instead of I.M.ing your team to remind them to jump on a call where they would have to repeat the long steps above, you can just paste the skypeIt ###-###-### ###### command necessary to immediately jump on a call. This serves to remind them a call is coming up or already started and saves time from having to find the number/extension as they can copy/paste it directly at the command line.

Or even better, if you’re on a Mac and using ZSH at the command line, SkypeIt has tab completion support and a YAML config strategy, so you can easily configure a project with your standard phone numbers (say daily standup conference number) and check in a .skypeitrc file to the project. When you’re in the context of the project you can just type skypeit stand<tab> and jump on your daily standup conference call.

Does anyone who works remotely actually stand-up on a daily standup call? hmmm…

Still early…

SkypeIt was written to solve a personal pain-point and is not yet a complete solution for all conference call situations. If you’d like to see your scenario supported, head on over to the SkypeIt Issues on GitHub and drop me a line.

I’m not currently using a windows machine – but with the windows protocol activation capabilities, we can probably easily add support for windows to SkypeIt.

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Disclaimer

The opinions and content expressed here are my own and not those of my employer.