API Digest #73: Using API to Drive Internal Change

Published 19 July 2017 | Updated 12 May 2020 |


We are back with our traditional fortnight API Digest! So, let me introduce topics of this edition:

  • New to API monitoring? Here are 5 tips to detect downtime before your users;
  • What qualities make a great API product owner?
  • Continue to explore restaurant menu as an analogy for API copyright and patents;
  • Having the right communications pipeline for your API platform;
  • An API that unlocks global credit data;
  • Using APIs to drive internal change;
  • How a developer converted Wikipedia into a text adventure.

Behind every great API is a reliable uptime monitoring system. In today's internet world filled with SaaS apps, there are many monitoring tools to choose from. People might be confused on exactly what to monitor or the right way to do it. Christopher Reichert has outlined 5 tips to detect downtime before your users.

Phil Nash takes a look at services that use Webhooks, exploring reasons to use WebHooks and the emerging best practices, and discusses implementing WebHook endpoints with live coded examples. Hit the link to watch his full presentation WebHooks: the API strikes back.

In this article by Kristopher Sandoval, you’re going to get acquainted with qualities that make a great API product owner, and what these qualities mean to the development process as a whole. Once you’ve finished this piece, you should have a solid understanding of these qualities, and a basic rubric upon which they can be compared and contrasted with your candidate of choice.

In his article “Continue to explore restaurant menu as an analogy for API copyright and patents”, Kin Lane focuses attention on why API patents are such a bad idea. APIs are not your secret sauce or process. To those who are in the business of patenting their company technology, he offers to focus on patenting secret sauce and truly unique processes, not the method for exchanging, selling, and baking their solution into other systems and applications.

In article “Having the right communications pipeline for your API platform”, Kin Lane exposes Matthew Reinbold’s potent formula for his communications platform, which is the cheapest and quickest way for your API to get a blog stood up, and get publishing stories about the value your API is bringing to the table. The approach isn’t just limited to developer portals or engineering team blog, this could be for partners or any API related project.

In his new  GET PUT POST edition, Gordon Wintrob spoke with Loek Janssen, CTO of Nova, the API that unlocks global credit data. This service aggregates credit data from around the world, so an immigrant coming to the US for the first time can access loans, credit cards, etc. based on credit history in their home country.

Today’s businesses need to be agile. They must be able to use data to identify new opportunities, to seize changes in customer and business patterns quickly, and to adapt to changing circumstances in the market. Mark Boyd believes in the article “Using APIs to drive internal change” that innovation leads and others in charge of reorienting an existing company to deliver on these three core tenets know that APIs are the secret sauce to making all of that happen.

Last week, Kevan Davis, a London-based web developer and game designer literally converted Wikipedia into a text adventure. He revealed what might be the first instance of “interactive nonfiction,” releasing a text-adventure game based on material from the Internet’s own encyclopedia. For more information check David Cassel’s article “How a developer converted Wikipedia into a text adventure”.

For more API news and insights, read API developer weekly #169 and #170 by Keith Casey and James Higginbotham.

See you in a fortnight! In the meanwhile, send us article suggestions and ideas. Either way, we are happy to hear from you. :)

P.S. In case you’d be interested in trying API2Cart, you can create an account and see how the API works on live stores.