Posted on 03-26-2013
I spent some time drinking IPAs and talking education technology with Audrey (@audreywatters) and a friend of ours Adam Wendt (@skinnyblimp), the COO of Iris Educational Media last week. IRIS Educational Media is a behavioral research and development company that provides educational resources for parents, parent educators, K-12 school staff, including teachers, administrators, paraprofessionals, and direct support employees.
During our discussion, Adam was describing how he wanted to make Iris Media resources available for people to use on any platform, by providing valuable embeddable tools and resources for organizations and professionals to use on their own sites and portals.
As Adam was talking, of course I’m thinking API. An API would not just a way to drive their own line of embeddable tools, but would also allow for other 3rd party developers to build specialized tools and widgets for other platforms that Iris Media might not have awareness, time or resources to focus on. Wanting to be available on numerous platforms is easy, but actually delivering on them can be costly and time consuming--APIs are a way to share this load with a 3rd party community.
An API could power Iris Media’s syndication similar to Youtube. The Youtube API, plus a robust embeddable tool strategy is behind the massive syndication and growth of the popular video platform. Iris Media could go further with its own API, by integrating a partner layer within their API platform, and provide developers, organizations and educational professionals the ability to earn revenue by syndicating or developing widgets and applications on top of the Iris Media API. This revenue could go a long way in ensuring some of these essential educational professionals organizations stay in operation and continue making an impact.
Engaging with people like Adam, who are truly making a difference in priority areas like education, is why I continue doing API Evangelist. APIs can help Iris Media be more successful in reaching its audience, but also empower the huge number of important individuals and organizations on the ground in communities around the globe, who deliver essential education where they are needed most.
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