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API Evangelist Blog

There Are Four API Design Editors To Choose From Now

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In the early days, there was just one API design tool to use, Apiary.io. Now at the end of 2014, we have four separate API design tools to choose from. I credit Apiary.io for opening up this new era of API design, expanding the API lifecycle, and emphasizing healthy API design practices over just API deployment and management. In my opinion the expansion of APIs design formats, and API design tooling is extremely important to the space, allowing API providers to have conversation around API design with developers, and key business stakeholders, before development actually begins. However, the benefits of......read more.



Sales, Onboarding And Support In A Self-Service API World

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I was reviewing an API over the last couple of weeks--I signed up for an account, came back several times, and made a handful of API calls in hopes of learning more about how the API works. This is something I do a lot, and it is always interesting to experience the on boarding process (or lack of) for APIs. I first signed up about two weeks ago for this particular API, and within 48 hours I received an email asking if I needed help with my integration--that was nice of them. I like getting an email from the provider,......read more.



An API For Developers To Access Their API Account Information

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When I landed on the version 3.0 landing page for the Mailjet API, the first thing I noticed was their API configuration API. Providing a set of API endpoints for managing my own API usage is definitely something I can get behind, and think it is something worth showcasing. As part of the API Configuration portion of their email API, Mailjet provides five separate endpoints for users to manage their API developer account. /apikey - Manage your Mailjet API Keys. API keys are used as credentials to access the API and SMTP server /apikeyaccess - Access rights description on API......read more.



My Continued Support As Signer Of Oracle v Google Amicus Brief From EFF

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https://www.eff.org/files/2014/11/07/google_v_oracle_computer-scientists-certpetition-amicus-brief_14-410_final.pdf As the Oracle v Google API copyright case was on its way to the Federal Circuit Court in 2012, the EFF reached out to me for help in crafting stories of how important it is that APIs remain free of copyright, ensuring they remain open and interoperable. I shared three stories, one on cloud computing and AWS APIs, the second on Delicious APIs, and the third on Instagram APIs, all reflecting three different scenarios that would never have happened if APIs were copyrightable. A couple weeks ago EFF reached out again, asking for my signature again, on another Amicus......read more.



Join Me Tomorrow For A Panel Discussion On API Ecosystems At SF MusicTech

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You can find me in San Francisco tomorrow, at the Kabuki Hotel for SF MusicTech. I'm moderating a panel, dubbed “API Ecosystem”, where I will be talking APis with Antti Silventoinen (@Lamantiini) of Music Kickup, Justin Woo (@jzwoo) of PayPal / Braintree, Steven Willmott (@njyx) of 3Scale, and Bill Hajjar from Senzari. I'm planning on walking the panelists through the world of API design, development, management, and focus on API monetization, but I suspect that we'll keep things pretty  relevant to the experience, and diversity we will have present on stage. There is  a healthy mix of music industry focused......read more.



I Will Review Your API On API Evangelist if You Add An APIs.json File Plus A Machine Readable API Definition

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I've been crafting Swagger 2.0 definitions for many of the leading APIs i track on lately, and to help alleviate my pain and suffering, I’m willing to write about your company if you write your own Swagger 2.0 spec. I’m sorry, this is really important work, but it can be very grueling detail work, and I'd really like your help! If you send me a 80% complete Swagger 2.0 specification, or for that matter, an API Blueprint or RAML specification, I will review your API efforts on the API Evangelist blog. I'm pretty adamant that all APIs today should have......read more.



Hey, Why Isn't This (API) Free

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It always makes me happy to see a pricing page, front and center when I visit an API, but I found an added bonus over at the email API, Inbox. At the bottom of their pricing page, they have a pretty simple question: Hey, why isn't this free? It’s become painfully clear in the past few years that if you’re not paying for something, you’re the product. In practice, this has resulted in “free” platforms that eventually were forced to show ads, sell user data, or fire-sale to a large company to only be unloved or shut-down. We’re taking a......read more.



Resource Base API Monetization vs. Experience Based API Monetization

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I’m lost in API monetization land, evaluating the business models of common APIs, so you are just going to have to cope with it, until I get through this research. Honestly, I really don't care this much about making money off of APIs, it is just telling me a lot about the motivations behind many of the APIs I keep an eye on. This particular story is extracted from my research into the monetization strategies of multiple core business sectors in the API space, and one of my regular conversations that I have, with an API provider around how they......read more.



Tracking On The Red Flags For API Monetization

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I spend my time gathering what I call b"uilding blocks", as I work my way through the API landscape. I’ve been tracking on the building blocks of API management since 2011, and have expanded that to include API design, deployment, evangelism, integration and other areas of the API lifecycle in the last 3 years. I'm working my way through the 700 APIs in my API stack, I am looking for industry focused building building blocks, as well as the ones associated with an APIs business model, or monetization strategy. I have almost twenty monetization building blocks I'm tracking on ranging from......read more.



Project Idea: Codenvy-Like Containerized Spreadsheets

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I wrote a story about a company I’m advising for last week called Codenvy, who is delivering modular, scalable, cloud development environments using their web IDE and Docker. I'm currently working my way through the spreadsheet to API, and API to spreadsheet solutions I track on, and it is making me think that someone should deliver a Codenvy-like containerized spreadsheet environment. With this type of environment you could forever end the emailing of spreadsheets, allowing people to craft spreadsheets, complete with all the data and visualization goodness they desire, and clone, fork, share, and collaborate around these containerized spreadsheets. You......read more.



Messente API: Always Use A Backup DNS Solution

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I found the DNS implementation over at the Messente SMS API interesting, and worth of sharing for deeper evaluation. I've been considering the various approaches by API providers when crafting their domains, or subdomains for API access heavily over the last couple weeks. During some research time today I stumbled across the Messente SMS API which opts to provide two domains for making HTTP(S) requests of their API: api2.messente.com api3.messente.com Messente provides a little disclaimer to handle the developer side of manual load-balancing these API calls: These two domains have the same final destination regarding the API functions. In order......read more.



Guest Post: Help Us Bring Out The Worst Of The Net So We Can Generate Page Views

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This is a guest post from one of our sponsors. We actually cringed, and puked in our mouth a little bit when we saw an email come in from this company, requesting a post, but they paid us well, and we knew the topic would generate an insane amount of page views, so what the hell—we can drink more so we can sleep at night. Our company didn't actually write this post, we just grabbed it from a blog that we regularly read, written by someone who actually understands the topic. This approach is much more beneficial to us, as......read more.



API Sandbox And Simulator From Carvoyant

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I’m digging deeper into my Evernote lately, getting back to those half written stories I have laying around, and next up is about the Carvoyant API sandbox and simulator. I came across their Free #connectedcar data candy in the Sandbox blog post, and was intrigued by the concept of a simulator, not just for IoT related APIs, but potentially for any API. Carvoyant provides a free API account which comes with a sandbox API for playing with the platform, and a traffic simulator that allows you generate vehicle and trip data for use in developing applications. I can see how......read more.



Some Examples of API Integration Pages In The Wild

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One pattern I'm seeing emerge on some of the API platforms I’m watching from week to week are integration pages, showcasing the other 3rd party services than an API has integration with. An integration page is similar to an application showcase, but instead of showing apps build on an API, you are showcasing other platforms that are already integrated with. A recent one that I’ve seen out in the wild is from web development annotation platform Usersnap, showing the platforms they connect to: The second I came across was from OpsGenie, the alerts and notification platform, showcasing all of the......read more.



Project Idea: Server Side API Deployment Using Open Source API Frameworks

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As I write up a story on Magnet, another one of the API SDK service providers to emerge in the space, I can't help but evaluate what other building blocks have the potential to evovolve, and be offered as a specific service. Machine readable API definition formats like Swagger and API Blueprint make services like Apimatic and Magnet possible, and I enjoy thinking about other potential services that could be easily generated from definitions in this way. One possiblity that comes to mind is server side scaffolding, and the possibilities of generating server side scaffolding for your APIs in a......read more.