Internal API Search Engine For Everyone At Your Company (Not Just Developers)
11 Sep 2014
I’ve talked about how the open source API search engine APIs.io can be deployed as an internal API search engine, as well as for public API discovery in the past. One aspect of this approach that I can’t emphasize enough, is that the search engine doesn’t just return APIs in the search results, it can provide access to supporting building blocks as well.
The APIs.json format doesn't just provide a machine readable way to describe, and index your APIs, it also provides a way to describe the building blocks that support your APIs like code samples, SDKs, and other things API consumers will need when putting APIs to work for them.
The indexing of these API support elements really starts to benefit company operations when you also bundle tools for non-developers alongside internal APIs, like spreadsheet connectors, d3.js visualizations built on top of APIs, and other elements that any user can reverse engineer, or just put to work immediately--no configuration necessary.
Imagine if your internal staff could access any digital resources across the company, similar to what Amazon has done internally, and not just find the API driven resources they need, but also the tools they need to apply them in their jobs. This is where APIs started getting really powerful, allowing anyone at your company to put APIs to work and get their jobs done in a self-service way, with a limited amount of IT resources required.