I’ve been using the LookupCIDName command to re-write incoming caller ID names for people that I know. This way, instead of ‘VOICESTREAM’, I get names like ‘Laird, Rusty - cell’.

Using LookupCIDName is easy, but populating the database it uses isn’t. So, here’s a tool: asterisk-vcard-cid. It extracts names and numbers for a directory full of vCards and inserts them into Asterisk’s cidname database. This, combined with ab2vcard and Subversion makes it easy to export your Mac OS X Address Book into Asterisk, although nothing here is really limited to Mac OS X; vCards are the dominant standard for exchanging address book information, so almost everything supports them.

There are two things to be aware of for this release. First, the code is written in Ruby, so you’re going to need a Ruby interpreter installed. Most Linux distributions have one prepackaged; use ‘ruby1.8’ on Debian.

Second, this release can only handle 1 vCard per vCard file. That’s the format that I’m using with ab2vcard, but most tools would rather do bulk exports by bundling lots of vCards together into a single file. If anyone is interested, then I can add support for multiple-vCard files in the next release.