Today in APIs: Watson's API and 10 New APIs

Greg Bates
Nov. 14 2013, 01:57PM EST

An API makes IBM's Watson publicly accessible: it's not just elementary. Google is using Cloud Endpoints to connect mobile developers to the cloud. Plus: Restlet raises $2M with APISpark, Google opens up spectrum database API for TV whitespace, and 10 new APIs.

IBM Makes Watson Available Via API

I'll take cognitive computing for $200. Answer: Jeopardy's most famous contestant. Question: What is Watson? If IBM gets its way, Watson is about to become a game changer for a second time. In this round the goal is to make cognitive computing a widely used tool by developers.

The simplicity of the connection, an API, could make this "a big fricking deal," according to Derrick Harris at Gigaom:

Developers who want to incorporate Watson’s ability to understand natural language and provide answers need only have their applications make a REST API call to IBM’s new Watson Developers Cloud. "It doesn’t require that you understand anything about machine learning other than the need to provide training data,” Rob High, IBM’s CTO for Watson, said in a recent interview about the new platform.

This could be a major challenge to Amazon Web Services, Harris argues, because Watson incorporates some 40 technologies in order to grasp what it does. Healthline, Elance and MD Buyline to name just a few partners, have all tapped in. The registration to work with Watson and use the API, along with a simple 5 step prep process, can be found here.

Google Cloud Endpoints Moves to General Availability

The goal of Cloud Endpoints is to help developers who are either building their own backend or need a turnkey solution.

As the post on the Google Cloud Platform Blog pointed out,

"For backend developers, simple annotations turn native Java and Python code into APIs that can be easily deployed and consumed by Android, iOS and web clients. Deployed APIs gain the resilience and scalability that other Google APIs have with features like DoS protection, OAuth support and client key management."

The idea behind this is to offer developers a simple way to create, expose and consume APIs served from App Engine. Or, as one comment on the blog put it succinctly, "build it faster and better."

API News Your Shouldn’t Miss

10 New APIs

Today we had 10 new APIs added to our API directory including a social email and people search application, a physiological and body movement sensor application, a file syncing service, a web application testing and bug detection service and a product information and intelligence provider. Below are more details on each of these new APIs.

ArkArk API: Ark is an email, search, and people search application. Ark provides an email application that compiles all social information about contacts and provides a social search engine for people and contacts.

The Ark API allows developers to access and integrate the functionality of Ark with other applications and to create new applications. Public documentation is not available; interested developers should request an API key here: http://ark.com/beta-api.

BITalinoBITalino API: BITalino is a solution that allows users to develop projects and applications that use body movements and physiological sensors to control the application and/or device.

The BITalino API allows developers to access and integrate the functionality of BITalino with other applications and to create new applications. Some example API methods include managing devices, creating functions, and calling up responses.

BitTorrent SyncBitTorrent Sync API: BitTorrent Sync is a file syncing, storage, and management application. BitTorrent Sync allows users to sync files and access them from any computer, phone, or tablet.

The BitTorrent Sync API allows developers to access and integrate the functionality of BitTorrent Sync with other applications and to create new applications. Some example API methods include retrieving folders, retrieving files, and managing and creating files and folders.

BugBusterBugBuster API: BugBuster is a web application testing solution. BugBuster provides automatic exploration and an API to allow developers to automatically scan and detect bugs in their web applications.

The BugBuster API allows developers to access and integrate the functionality of BugBuster with other applications. Public documentation is not available; API access comes with account service.

IndixIndix API: Indix provides information and intelligence about products. Indix provides a Big Data and SaaS tool to support brands and retailers to access product data including descriptions, images, and almost-realtime pricing information.

The Indix API allows developers to access and integrate the data and functionality of Indix with other applications and to create new applications. Some example API methods include searching product information, retrieving product information, and retrieving a price history for specified products.

KantanMTKantanMT API: KantanMT provides solutions to build machine translation engines that can be integrated into any workflow or project management system.

The KantanMT API allows developers to access and integrate the functionality of KantanMT with other applications. Some example API methods include searching jobs, managing jobs, and uploading documents and files.

PowaPowa API: Powa is an eCommerce and mobile commerce solution provider. Powa provides online and mobile sales platforms for companies, vendors, retaillers, and other organizations in need of online sales capabilities.

The Powa API allows developers to access and integrate the functionality of Powa with other applications. Public documentation is not available; interested developers should sign up for a developer account: http://www.powa.com/page/Developers+%26+agencies.

Sentiment Analysis OnlineSentiment Analysis Online API: Sentiment Analysis Online is a free web service able to determine the sentiment, or tone, of a given text. The service, accessible through a free API, is able to extract from any English text the emotion or attitude toward a person, organization, product, or location.

VIN decoderVIN decoder API: VIN Decoder is a VIN information service where users can can input a vehicles VIN number and the decoded information back. The VIN will return manufacturer data including: Manufacturer, manufacturer address, product type, make, check digit, model year,plant code, and sequential number, as well as data from police data bases. The VIN Decoder API uses REST API to allows users to submit VIN numbers. The service is free to use, but the API has tiered pricing for usage.

VisualeadVisualead API: Visualead is a QR code generator. Visualead allows users to create, design, and manage QR codes. The QR codes can also be tracked and edited from a dashboard.

The Visualead API allows developers to access and integrate the functionality of Visualead and the QR codes with other applications. Public documentation is not available; interested developers should email api@visualead.com for API access.

Greg Bates A writer for Programmableweb since 2012, Greg is a freelance writer and a maniacal editor of dissertations and term papers. - Follow me on Google+

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