Newbie question about features, and project example

Hi everyone,

I’m new to Asterisk, and am just starting to explore it’s possibilities.
I have a few questions I hope you don’t mind me asking.

I’m just trying to get an understanding of the software, and what it’s capable of, and if it might fit our needs, etc…

Here’s what I’m looking for:

  • A system that can answer incoming calls, play a welcome recording.

  • The callers presses 1,2,3,etc… on their touch tone phone to choose options, and enters their ID number.

  • The system would check if the ID entered exists in the MySQL database, if it does not, then they get a recording saying ID not found, try again, if it does, then…

  • The system time stamps the callers ID that they called in.

  • A nice option would be for callers to get different recordings based on time of day, and not be able to enter options based on time of day.

Here’s the application I’ve been tasked with creating:
I’m a firefighter with a small town in Ontario Canada.
Anyone in the county who wants to have a small controlled fire has to purchase a “burn permit” from their local town office, and call the fire department dispatch centre when they are going to burn.

We want to automate this, so instead of a dispatcher being tied up with takign burn permit information calls, the computer will do it.

Here’s the exact flow:

Callers who want to start an authorized controlled buy a permit from their township office.

The town clerk enters their information into a MySQL database I’ve setup over the web and gives the person a unique ID number.

The person goes home, and is ready to start burning, so they call the phone number for the burn permit activation.

The system asks what township they live in. They press 1 for x, 2 for y, 3 for z, etc…

The system then checks to see what time it is (burning is only permitted between certain hours (eg, no burning at night)
If it’s past 10:00pm, the system plays a recording saying it’s too late, and hangs up.)
If it’s during proper allowed burning hours, the system then asks the caller for their unique ID number (issued to them when they bought their burn permit).

They key this ID number into their touch tone phone.

The system then looks in the MySQL database for their ID number.
If found, the system records the time the person called in to start burning.
If not found, the system tells them it’s not found and asks them to re-enter it.

I would then write a separate program myself that would use the same MySQL database and use google maps to plot where all the active authorized burns are so dispatchers can see (if they get any complaints, etc…) about people burning.

I hope that makes some sense. :smile:

Is Asterisk meant for this type of application? and if so, would CE or PRO be more suited to our needs.
Also, would this be a custom programming / scripting add on to get it to work, or could I get this working with Asterick’s features right out of the box.

I need to figure out a budget and options to present to the Chief.

Thanks a lot for your help and input, I really appreciate it.
take care.

Asterisk is well suited for this application, no need for the PRO version; in the IVR, to read/write records in the mysql database you could use an AGI script (php, perl or whatever you prefer) or use func_odbc and build all just in the dialplan, anyway Asterisk has all you need.

A good free book about Asterisk is here: .


Marco Bruni

Hi mbruni,

Thanks for the quick reply and the great resource link.
I really appreciate it.

I’ll do some studying and see what I can come up with.

Thanks again!
Take care.