We Are Hiring

Author Archives: Elmer Thomas

About Elmer Thomas

Elmer Thomas is SendGrid's Hacker in Residence. His mission is to help SendGrid live up to its slogan: "Email Delivery. Simplified" by improving the lives of developers, both internally and externally. Via all sorts of hackery, of course. Follow his exploits on Twitter and GitHub.

Elmer Thomas on TwitterElmer Thomas on Google+

Articles Posted by Elmer


Your Programming Style Guide Checklist

Posted on (2 Comments)

Every programming language or framework has a defined coding style guide. It’s generally a good idea to conform to that style guide for the sake of collaboration and maintainability. In this post, we will walk through the process of creating a personal programming (project level) style guide and templates that will combine to serve as a checklist for your projects. Over time, you will have created several checklists for various development scenarios. The upfront investment to create these documents should save you many hours of time throughout your hacking adventures. Location I suggest you create a directory to store these

READ MORE »

How I Write Technical Blog Posts

Posted on (2 Comments)

I love technical blog posts, especially those that can take you through the entire process of building an app, A to Z. After reading thousands of technical blog posts and writing many myself, I’ve decided that it’s time to share a workflow that I hope will help those who are creating amazing things to blog more easily and often. The specific tools utilized in this workflow are Mac OSX based, but the concepts can be applied to any toolchain. Check out AlternativeTo.net to find similar apps for your OS. Use the Natural Planning Method When I write a technical blog

READ MORE »

Create the Ultimate Interactive Presentation: Reveal.js, Leap Motion, Google Glass and SendGrid

Posted on (1 Comment)

When a developer demos their software, especially at a hackathon, it’s best to “do it live.” For longer form presentations, a slide deck is generally the tool of choice, either using Keynote or Power Point. Having attended hundreds, if not thousands, of technical talks and hackathon presentations in the past few years, I can tell you definitively, even a small dash of interactivity goes a long way towards keeping the audience engaged. Of course, a slick presentation is not necessary, but it doesn’t hurt either, especially if it does not cost a great deal of time to create. In this

READ MORE »

Quickly Prototype APIs with Apiary

Posted on (2 Comments)

I love the idea of API Driven Development (ADD). It provides great flexibility and by default makes your app developer friendly from the beginning. The challenge is that it’s hard to demo an API without an application tied to it. The goal of this post is to help you get past the API design and creation phase as quickly as possible, so you can focus on creating killer apps and encourage others to build upon your exposed data. This tutorial should be especially useful for hackathons and prototypes. With the APIary.io platform we’ll create documentation that your whole team can

READ MORE »

Google Glass Tutorial Sends Email Visually

Posted on (2 Comments)

I have been spending a lot of quality time with Google Glass and Android lately. I’ve already shared a few of those experiences, like sending trackable email on Google Glass using its Mirror API and my Android email tutorial. Most recently I have been working on a native “Glassware” app, which I’d like to share here. Using the Google Glass GDK I’ll show you how to: Create native Glassware (Glassware is the name Google has given to apps running on Glass) Activate and interact with your Glassware by voice Use menus to edit your Glassware’s data Manipulate Cards in an

READ MORE »

Send Email From Android Applications

Posted on (1 Comment)

I have been playing with Google Glass lately, which got me working more with Android. Since I recently built my first native Android app, I thought I’d share how to send email and retrieve statistics using the SendGrid Java library. Since this is my first attempt, please send a pull request or open an issue if I did something unholy. You may find the complete source code at Github. If you are not interested in native Android development, check out our tutorial based on the AppMobi platform. If you are new to Android native development, I suggest you start with

READ MORE »

Collect Inbound Email Using Python and Flask

Posted on (1 Comment)

Our Inbound Parse Webhook allows your app to receive an email formatted as a JSON object for easy processing. Any script will do for creating the webhook endpoint, but in this tutorial I’ll share a simple Python microframework called Flask. Set Up and Configure your SendGrid Account The Incoming Parse Webhook is available through our free, Silver and higher plans. If you don’t have a SendGrid account, go ahead and sign up here. After completing your SendGrid account setup, we will need to create an email address to be used for receiving emails. This is achieved by setting your MX

READ MORE »