Why are we emailing each other even though we have a Slack group? Modern project teams rely on a healthy mixture of both: Emails are useful for formal communication and documentation while communication apps (e.g. Slack, serve as a platform for near SlickSlack.

What it does

SlickSlack is an Enhancement to the Mixmax Chrome Extension. It gives you the ability to forward a snippet (like a TL;DR) from your handcrafted email to your Slack group. Now everyone can be kept up to date without pouring through tons of emails.

How we built it

This ecosystem of communication services had to be built from services that responded fast and securely. The text snippet would be extracted using a combination of Mixmax's Integration API and JavaScript while Oauth2 authentication happens between a Python script and Slack's Web API for first-time users. As a result, that little snippet can speed out of the email and into the Slack group channel.

Challenges we ran into

Both Mixmax and Slack have APIs that offer boundless possibilities. The challenge came in integrating the capabilities of these two productive tools because JavaScript was used with Mixmax but Python was used with Slack. Connecting these two languages required a fair amount of work on calling and executing the scripts from a Server (Amazon Web Services).

Accomplishments that we're proud of

Never have we seen so many languages, API documentation, and errors in 36 hours. We can gladly say that it was worth the loss of hair.

What we learned

Some of the steepest learning curves of this weekend were in cross-language script integration and agile thinking.

What's next for SlickSlack

Broadcasting email summary to Mars is just the tip of the iceberg. Slack's API has many more functions that can and will enhance Project Management. Look forward to more features in SlickSlack.

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