Hear Ye! Since 1998.
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Dec 03

MMS Posting

I’ve decided that I won’t implement MMS posting just yet. I intended to get it working for my overseas trip. I got around to writing up everything (the MIME parsing code, writing attachments to hard drive, constructing the post text etc) but I realised that I have no idea about how MMS works overseas. Firstly, the system is different from SMSes – I actually had to enable GPRS with Vodafone to get MMSes to work and I don’t know if, when roaming on overseas networks, GPRS/WAP will be automatically enabled and whether I can send MMSes. Secondly, the format of MMS messages (which are essentially e-mails with attachments) seems to differ with the network which may trip up the parsing code I currently have, and there’s no way to test otherwise. And there’s no way I’m debugging code while I’m on holiday :).

Technical note: Posting to your blog with a mobile device (called Moblogging which is a stupid term, imho) is not difficult. Essentially, most mobile devices (PDAs, mobiles, Blackberry and so on) can send e-mails. SMSes need to be routed through an SMS-to-Email gateway, such as Excell. They arrive at your mail server and get processed by a script. You might run a cron job to run your script which checks for mail every so often. You might automatically pipe it to your script in through a .forward file, or with Procmail, or similar. The script then parses the email (which is where the bulk of the work lies), then posts it to the blog (via a SQL call, XML-RPC call, etc).

Has anyone noticed how different countries call mobile phones different things? In the US it’s cell phones. In Australia it’s mobile phones. In Asia it’s hand phones.