Pop.co explains why its architecture is driven by APIs. Plus: Salesforce deploys APIs to redefine customer relationships, and 11 new APIs.
For Website Creator Pop.co, APIs Spell Developer Liberation
Pop.co makes it possible to launch your idea on a website in less than a minute. Call it from zero to startup in 60 seconds.
Writing on the Pop blog, Corey Ballou explains how and why their entire site is driven by an API, where the frontend codebase is separated from the backend API. He called it a separation of concerns:
"We wanted a complete separation of the frontend and backend codebases for easier management. The word separation of concerns comes to mind. We believe we lowered our future technical debt by not interlacing backend templated code into frontend client views. Our frontend is almost entirely HTML5 and JS driven, which we believe is hugely beneficial as the future of web development progresses."
That separation of concerns is actually just one of six reasons driving the company's use of API architecture. The other five are: openness (for when they might offer a publicly available API), simplifying scalability, reducing language barriers with the API acting like a universal language, developer liberation by reducing what they are required to know, and finally widgetization. That last one refers to the ability to load pages asynchronously, so that their pages have a much smaller footprint up front.
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11 New APIs
Today we had 11 new APIs added to our API directory including a project management platform, a crypto-currency exchange service, a fraud detection service, a face detection web service and a nudity detection web service. Below are more details on each of these new APIs.
Blimp API: Blimp is an intelligent project management system designed to track data based on the project team's processes. Users can split projects into goals and goals into tasks, which can then be assigned to team members. Communication on specific projects is facilitated by the "discussion" feature, which can be accessed via the website or by email. Blimp keeps track of all events in a project's history, including file revisions. Users can share specific versions of files, not just the most recent one.
Developers can access all of their data stored with Blimp programmatically via REST API.
Cryptonit API: Cryptonit is a crypto-currency market place where users can buy, sell, and exchange bitcoins. The site uses SSL for authentication along with user login. The Cryptonit API uses REST calls and returns JSON or XML. Possible calls include indexing, creating, retrieving, and otherwise manipulating the users bitcoins. An account is required with service.
FraudLabs Pro Fraud Prevention API: The FraudLabs Pro API is a credit card screening engine that check transactions for online frauds utilizing a wide array of metrics and fraud detection analytics. AN account is required with service, and an API key is required. The API uses REST calls and returns JSON and XML. Developers and merchants can integrate this fraud screening API in any of their e-commerce websites or shopping carts in order to evaluate high risk orders, reduce chargeback, improves operation efficiency and provides business intelligent.
ImageVision FaceDetection API: ImageVision provides visual search and analytics services that automate the recognition and tagging of user generated media. The ImageVision Face Detection API is a web service able to determine the locations and sizes of faces within images.
ImageVision NuditySearch API: ImageVision provides visual search and analytics services that automate the recognition and tagging of user generated media. ImageVision NuditySearch is an API detects nudity within an image by recognizing anatomical attributes. API users are able to specify a nudity sensitivity value.
National Geographic FieldScope API: FieldScope is an interactive mapping platform provided by National Geographic that allows citizen scientists to share, analyze, and interpret location-based data with other enthusiasts. Using FieldScope, people can join projects, start new ones, or just explore the data that others have gathered. Using and contributing to FieldScope is free and requires no software downloads. Project contributors can simply add observations to the map as they collect them. Developers can retrieve, add, update, and delete observations programmatically via REST API.
Philly Hoods API: The Philly Hoods API is a simple REST service for retrieving information on neighborhoods in Philadelphia. It can provide users with the GeoJSON for a neighborhood when given its name, or it can supply the neighborhood where a lat./long. coordinate pair is located. There is no official neighborhood boundary dataset for Philadelphia; the dataset used in the Philly Hoods API is provided by Azavea, a geospatial analysis company. Additional features are expected to be added to the API in the future.
Prowork API: Prowork is a real-time collaboration service designed for all kinds of projects where team members are spread out. Prowork is available online, on many types of mobile devices, and via API. Users can create projects and tasks, add team members, assign work, share files, chat, send messages, and more. The Prowork API, though still in its early stages, allows developers to access basic Prowork functions programmatically.
Pryv API: Pryv is a platform for collecting personal, time-based data of all kinds to give users a visual overview of their online lives. This data may include health metrics, locations, videos, notes, or anything else with a time attached to it. Pryv unites all of these heterogeneous data streams and sources to allow users to view the data-based aspects of their lives as a complete picture. This data may be kept entirely private or shared with select individuals. The Pryv API allows users to retrieve their personal data from Pryv via REST calls.
Putler API: Putler is a sales analysis and reporting service that can keep track of transactions occurring at multiple payment gateways and shopping carts. Once the data is collected, Putler processes it into charts and statistics for users to reference. Putler comes with integrations and connectors for popular payment gateways and WordPress eCommerce plugins. If users want to connect Putler to a gateway or shopping cart that lacks a ready-made integration, they can use Putler's REST API to make the connection themselves.
Whomsy API: Whomsy is a free whois lookup service. This means that users can search for who owns a given domain, when it was registered, etc. It will also tell users if the domain is unregistered so that they can register it themselves. Developers can access Whomsy's functions programmatically via REST API.