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Helping Stoplight.io Get The Word Out About Version 3.0

I’ve been telling stories about what the Stoplight.io team has been building for a couple of years now. They are one of the few API service provider startups left that are doing things that interest me, and really delivering value to their API consumers. In the last couple of years, as things have consolidated, and funding cycles have shifted, there just hasn’t been the same amount of investment in interesting API solutions. So when Stoplight.io approached me to do some storytelling around their version 3.0 release, I was all in. Not just because I’m getting paid, but because they are doing interesting things, that I feel are worth talking about.

I’ve always categorized Stoplight.io as an API design solution, but as they’ve iterated upon the last couple of versions, I feel they’ve managed to find their footing, and are maturing to become one of the few truly API lifecycle solutions available out there. They don’t serve every stop along the API lifecycle, but they do focus on a handful of the most valuable stops, and most importantly, they have adopted OpenAPI as the core of what they do, allowing API providers to put Stoplight.io to work for them, as well as any other solutions that support OpenAPI at the core.

As far as the stops along the API lifecycle that they service, here is how I break them down:

  • Definitions - An OpenAPI driven way of delivering APIs, that goes beyond just a single definition, and allows you to manage your API definitions at scale, across many teams, and services.
  • Design - One of the most advanced API design GUI solutions out there, helping you craft and evolve your APIs using the GUI, or working directly with the raw JSON or YAML.
  • Virtualization - Enabling the mocking and virtualization of your APIs, allowing you to share, consume, and iterate on your interfaces long before you have deliver more costly code.
  • Testing - Provides the ability to not just test your individual APIs, but define and automate using detailed tests, assertions, and deliver a variety of scenarios to ensure APIs are doing what they should be doing.
  • Documentation - Allows for the publishing of simple, clean, but interactive documentation that is OpenAPI driven, and share with your team, and your API community through a central portal.
  • Discovery - Tightly integrated with Github, and maximizing an OpenAPI definition in a way that makes the entire API lifecycle discoverable by default.
  • Governance - Allows for teams to get a handle on the API design and delivery lifecycle, while working to define and enforce API design standards, and enforce a certain quality of service across the lifecycle.

They may describe themselves a little differently, but in terms of the way that I tag API service providers, these are the stops they service along the API lifecycle. They have a robust API definition and design core, with an attractive easy to use interface, which allows you to define, design, virtualize, document, test, and collaborate with your team, community, and other stakeholders. Which makes them a full API lifecycle service provider in my book, because they focus on serving multiple stops, and they are OpenAPI driven which allows every other stop to also be addressed using any other tools and service that supports OpenAPI–which is how you do business with APIs in 2018.

I’ve added API governance to what they do, because they are beginning to build in much of what API teams are going to need to begin delivering APIs at scale across large organizations. Not just design governance, but the model and schema management you’ll need, combined with mocking, testing, documentation, and the discovery that comes along with delivering APIs like Stoplight.io does. They reflect not just where the API space is headed with delivering APIs at scale, but what organizations need when it comes to bringing order to their API-driven, software development lifecycle in a microservices reality.

I have five separate posts that I will be publishing over the next couple weeks as Stoplight.io releases version 3.0 of their API development suite. Per my style I won’t always be directly about their product, but I’ll be talking about the solutions it deliver, but occasionally you’ll hear me mention them directly, because I can’t help it. Thanks to Stoplight.io for supporting what I do, and thanks to you my readers for checking out what Stoplight.io brings to the table. I think you are going to dig what they are up to.