Get CrunchBase Startup Data Via SMS

We are continuing to see some really useful stuff being hacked together after we released an unrestricted API for the startup data we’ve gathered on CrunchBase. Last month we wrote about some of our favorite applications using the API.

A couple of days ago blogger/venture capitalist Fred Wilson wrote about some of the things he’d like to be able to do on his mobile phone that he can’t do today. Among them was this: “Twitter or sms bot for Crunchbase – When I hear about a company, I want to send the name of the company via twitter or sms to crunchbase and get a link back to a the entry on it.”

There was an immediate response in the comments with solutions. A Twitter-bot to return CrunchBase info. Sean Maurik from Cascada Mobile created a mobile app that works on a bunch of phones to get CrunchBase data. A SMS interface was also created.

The most usable interface was created by Russell Beattie on Textmarks. Joe Lazarus made it even more useful.

Bottom line, to get data from CrunchBase via SMS, send a text message to 41411. “CBASE digg” returns the contact information for Digg (or whatever term you enter). “cbsms tumblr” returns a link to the top search result for Tumblr. You can also enter in product names, people, etc.

By the way, one of the other things Fred requested in his post was a way to handshake two mobile phones and share contact info. A decade ago we could do this with the Palm V. I can’t wait to do the same with my iPhone.