Looking Into Yammer's Developer Center

Jeremy Glassenberg
Jun. 02 2011, 10:37AM EDT

Private social network platform Yammer added a developer portal to support its Yammer API. Yammer has had an open API for some time, along with community features such as a developer blog, but the site reorganization prepares Yammer for a growing developer community with new must-have features.

Yammer first recently announced the program in April. The new network includes a "Developer Center," with a new community page including a blog and mailing list, and a developer sandbox. The company plans to add more soon, perhaps including a forum.

"The new developer site organizes materials produced for our third party developers," Yammer Developer Advocate, Mikeal Rogers said. "It gives those developers a place to interact with each other and share knowledge in a community."

On the technical front, Yammer has begun the first phase of a developer sandbox. Currently the sandbox enables the quick creation of an API key, and a simple way of testing API calls in the browser.

Yammer knew to establish an API early in the company's development, but has a ways to go before "catching up" with its longer-running, consumer-focused product equivalent, Twitter. Although not really competitive, Twitter's popularity can be a good benchmark for Yammer as a service and a developer platform. And Yammer so far hasn't disappointed us. Yammer's API is well designed and well documented, providing the OAuth standard and the increasingly popular JSON format. The API's set of methods is quite thorough and provides accessibility to a vast range of functionality within the Yammer service.

For the next steps, I'd recommend that Yammer's engineering team prepare some basic code samples and programming libraries, which of course can grow organically once its base of community developers grows. With the current design and latest set of tools, I'm confident in seeing more good additions over time.

Jeremy Glassenberg

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