A Node-RED Twitter-follower-flow

In my last blog post I did an introduction to “how use the starter kit for Node-RED on IBM Cloud” and in that new blog post I want to highlight the Node-RED Twitter-follower-flow I developed as an introduction to different topics I frequently face at hackathons. Here is the link to the “Twitter-follower-flow” GitHub project. Node-RED is very good for prototyping, that is the reason why it is often used in hackathons. If you are new to Node-RED and you start  to develop a Node-RED flow, you normally have following challenges:

  • How to …
    1. … define own REST endpoints to encapsulate an external API?
    2. … automate the authentication to that external API?
    3. … extract data from the external API?
    4. … customize data and CRUD with databases?

The Node-RED flow of that project has the objective to provide an (little advanced) introduction to the first three topics above. The CRUD (Create, Read, Update, Delete) topic is not covered here. Visit that CRUD example for more information.

  • The “Twitter-follower-flow” example …
    • … uses open technologies (Node-RED is a Project of the OpenJS foundation )
    • … creates no additional costs
    • … has following technical level:
      • Beginner to intermediate
      • Needs a basic knowledge of JavaScript and REST
    • … takes 30 – 45 min to setup the example from scratch
      1. Register on IBM Cloud
      2. Create a Node-RED instance on IBM Cloud
      3. Register at Twitter for a developer API Account
      4. Copy the existing Node-RED flow
      5. Configure the flow
      6. Run the flow
The gifs shows a execution of the Twitter-follower-flow:

twitter-follower-flow-execution

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A short introduction of the Node-RED Starter kit on IBM Cloud for Hackathons

In that blog post I want to highlight the new way of the instantiation of a Node-RED application on  IBM Cloud with the Node-RED Starter kit. From my perspective Node-RED is a very helpful tool at hackathons. (just take a look in my blog post  How to prepare for a Hackathon with IBM Cloud?)

The Node-RED instantiation has changed and with the Node-RED Starter kit we can take the advantage of the capabilities of IBM Cloud to control the build, deployment and execution of the Node-RED application and we setup automatically all  development tools to work effectively in a small development team in our hackathon.

I want to provide a short walkthrough from my perspective and created a 13 min YouTube video in addition to that blog post.

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Cors and Node-RED using a simple forwarding server

When you use Node-RED on IBM Cloud during hackathons you will notice REST calls in flows cannot be directly invoked from a web application. The reason for this is mostly that cors (cross-origin resource sharing) is not enabled for the Node-RED server. This blog post is a simple workaround for this problem.

By the way, you can use the IBM Cloud for free, if you simply create an IBM Lite account. Here you only need an e-mail address.

I developed this workaround to have full control and be very flexible during a hackathon, when using Node-RED for prototyping and building integrations to services and web-applications, without changing Node-RED settings or using cors browser enabler.

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Being @Hacknext a Hackathon and Conference to create impact in InsurTech

I was one of the coaches at the sold out Hacknext in Munich, hosted at Kohlebunker, from  7. March – 9. March 2019 and in this blog post I want to share my personal impressions.

From my point of view it was great to see: young people build relevant solutions for the future with the latest technologies on cloud.
Best wishes to all hackers who attended and every success for the future.

IMG_6066.JPG

Hacknext  includes a hackathon and conference related to the insurance business called InsurTech.

In other words the hackers, attendees and coaches were spending three days in the Kohlebunker for:

  • Taking on challenges together, approximately 110 hackers organized into 20 teams
  • Benefiting from professional exchange on InsurTech with approximately 60 conference attendees
  • Providing valuable support from the API coaches

The challenges

Each of the hacker teams had to address a minimum of one of these challenges:

  • Using smart data and its benefits for insurance
  • Building the future of digital bancassurance
  • (R)evolutioning of the insurance agent
  • Rethinking retirement

In the following YouTube video you get a short impression of the great atmosphere at the hacknext:

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Being one of the coaches at the largest Healthcare Hackathon in Europe

I want just to give you a brief personal impression about 1 ½ days of my last week as a Developer Advocate at IBM.

Being one the of coaches at the largest Healthcare Hackathon in Europe was incredible.

The Hack was supported by the University Hospital of Schleswig-Holstein (UKSH), Merck , the Kieler Nachrichten and IBM .

Around 150 hackers worked for two days in 25 international teams including students, companies and startups.  More numbers you can find on the official webpage Healthcare Hackathon in Europe .

For me:

We as humans, health is our most important asset, at the Healthcare Hackathon it was brought to the foreground again with the help of technology and new ideas.

Here I want just to highlight some ideas, I was personally impressed.
I put my free interpretation for each of these challenges under each bullet point of the challenges.
Note: Some of the linked information is in german.

The winner wasHospimotion-and-Hospitainment-VR 
“Getting better by playing your physiotherapy game in “VR”.”

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