If you manage a meetup group, here’s a fun way to display the profile photos of everyone who attends one of your events.

Enter your event ID into my Meetup Explorer app, and it’ll display the profile photo of everyone who RSVP’d “yes” to your event. People without profile photos are not included. To get your event ID, just look at the URL of the event’s page. It’s the big number at the end of the URL.

The program works by using the Meetup API. I use the RSVPs call to get a list of all “yes” RSVPs, and the Groups call to get the name of the event and the name of the group hosting it.

I wrote a super-small PHP proxy script for each call. The RSVPs script looks like this:

<?php 
$ch = curl_init(); 
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_URL, 
  "https://api.meetup.com/2/rsvps?key=YOURKEYHERE&" . $_SERVER['QUERY_STRING']);
curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER, 1);
echo curl_exec($ch);
curl_close($ch);
?>

The display works with a bit of CSS and JavaScript to control the appearance. The images are displayed on a grid across the entire screen, and will resize as you change the browser’s window’s dimensions. When you hover over a profile photo, the person’s name will appear, and when you move the cursor out of the window, the event and group names will appear. The fading and animation effects are accomplished using the CSS transition property.

I figure this might be a good static display for meetup groups to use as people are gathering before the presentations begin.

I’ve added a “hidden” feature: press “R” on the keyboard to randomly select a member. The name label will randomly jump between different profile photos. When you hit R a second time, it will freeze on the last selection, and the image will grow to fill the screen. (To save bandwidth, I use the smaller profile photos, which won’t look good when expanded to fill the screen.) Hitting R a third time will return the image to its regular size.

I was surprised how thorough Meetup’s API is, and how good the documentation is. It was an easy API to explore and create a gadget out of.

A Photo Album of Meetup RSVPs

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