John Schimmel

Spring 2006

Busker Du turns public payphones into global microphones for musicians, buskers and those who have something to say. Call in, let the phone hang and we'll record and publish it to the web.

The story

There are some great musicians performing on the streets of New York, many underground. My friend Ryan Holsopple and I created a small website that allows people to call from a payphone and record street musicians which immediately gets posted to an audio blog. This site is called for a play on the 80’s band Husker Du from Minnesota.

Unfortunately the site is now closed, it was too expensive to run. Perhaps we'll open it again in time.

The process

The basics of the system, we accept an incoming phone call into our Asterisk server. The asterisk server runs a simple script that plays a welcome message and like a voice mail system records a message. After the phone is hung up the recorded song (message) will be uploaded to our web server, converted into an MP3 file and posted to our Wordpress blog.

Asterisk is amazing and I hope to play with it more in the future, controlling incoming and outgoing calls, connecting callers to recording dialog; all of this is available on a reliable open source piece of software. Amazing.

Exhibited at
ITP Spring Show 2006

Ryan Holsopple

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