RE: an HTTP agent for placing and receiving telephone calls

From: Josh Cohen (
Date: Mon Jan 15 2001 - 04:36:18 PST

Hello SIP... :)

Actually, I'm happy to see thought in this direction
as I was frustrated
by the SIP authors' decision to cut and paste HTTP
instead of building on HTTP (or extending it)
to perform telephony functionality.

>-----Original Message-----
>From: Dan Connolly []
>Sent: Saturday, January 13, 2001 22:49
>To:; Miller,Eric;;;
>Subject: an HTTP agent for placing and receiving telephone calls
>The lack of tel: and irc: support in the web has itched
>me for the longest time; after writing/whining about it
>a bit...
> Real-Time Resources in the Web
> Sat, 13 Jan 2001 17:05:51 GMT
>I finally scratched the itch with some hacking...
>an HTTP agent for placing and receiving
>telephone calls
>This telagent integrates telephones as resources in the web, using
>the tel: scheme; see Real-Time Resources in the Web for details; the
>basic idea is:
> 1.your web user agent should handle a link to W3C's MIT office
> phone (NS) kinda like a mailbox link: offer to dial to it.
> 2.caller-id should make the phone a little more like email: you
> can tell who it's from before you answer it, and you can answer
> it any time later with one click.
>Start it going ala:
>python /dev/ttyS3 491-0501 8501 ~/.phoneLog
>and it will
> open a connection to the modem (/dev/ttyS3) and log caller-id
> info
> listen on port 8501 for HTTP requests:
> GET / shows a log of the caller-id info with
> incoming numbers linked to their tel: addresses for
> easy call-back
> additional info about the area code
> GET tel:... shows an offer (a form) to dial to that phone;
> for north american numbers, it shows timezone info and,
> based on that, the current time there.
> POST /dialer with dialAs and target args dials the phone
> (and writes a log entry)
> POST /dialer with an empty dialAs hangs up the phone
> let incoming calls spawn new windows:
> turn incoming caller-id info into HTTP POST events that
> you can subscribe to (ala KnowNow)
> an HTTP agent that responds to POST requests by
> bringing up web pages on the desktop.
> along with "dial this number" requests, support "... and start
> recording the resulting conversation"; in general, handle
> follow-up after dialing
> load (some of) the caller-id log from disk on start-up, and
> purge some of it from memory after a while.
>Netscape, unfortunately, doesn't support proxying tel:... URIs; in
>fact, it doesn't recognize them as absolute URIs. You can, however,
>(ab)use the urn: proxy support; try this automatic proxy
>configuration for urn:tel: URIs, and then try W3C's MIT office
>phone, rigged with netscape work-around.
>My tel: handler is limited to localhost (; I haven't figured
>out a good way to get the absolute URI of the dialer to the right
>parts of the code.
>There's an abstract TelnumNav class for figuring out what digits to
>call to get from this phone to the phone identified by some URI; the
>subclass I've implemented is the rules for dialing from 913 in
>Kansas (which is pretty much like any place else in the U.S., except
>for 816 numbers).
>Architecture and Requirements
> Sam Rushing's cooperative multi-tasking server architecture
> I just downloaded medusa-src-20000601.tar.gz and
> unpacked it and then used
> PYTHONPATH=/medusa's/parent/dir python ...
> to help python find it
>Acknowledgements and References
>conversation with David Boles... JWZ's caller-id thingy...
>found cid 17Dec2000; it's a client/server caller-id thingy in python
> URLs for Telephone Calls, A. Vaha-Sipila , April 2000
> tel: in An Index of WWW Addressing Schemes
> -- Extended AT Command Sets
> Fri, 31 Jul 1998 21:06:12 GMT
> Zoom Telephonics: Dualmode Zoom/FaxModems 56K, 56Kv,
> and 56Kx
> Thu, 01 Jun 2000 12:31:55 GMT
>Dan Connolly
>$Revision: 1.2 $ of $Date: 2001/01/14 06:38:53 $ by $Author:
>connolly $
>-- 2001/telagent/
>Thu, 01 Jan 1970 00:00:00 GMT
>Dan Connolly, W3C

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