The Latest News On The API Economy
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The business networking site LinkedIn has now launched a new application platform they call InApps. It's an OpenSocial-based platform that enables third-party developers to create applications that get embedded into LinkedIn user's profiles. While this follows along the model used of Facebook, MySpace and host of other social platforms, it differs in its emphasis on being business centric in nature and, like the service itself, follows a much more controlled and button-downed approach. And like the LinkedIn API that we reported on last year, access is limited based on an approval process.
Wikia Search has announced a new feature called Wikia Intelligent Search Extensions, or WISE, which founder Jimmy Wales likens to "Facebook Apps for search results." The new platform allows third parties to build applications, called WISEApps, that Wikia Search users can enable in their accounts and which add additional functionality to relevant search results (more at our Wikia API profile). For example, the results for an ordinary search for "Chicago weather" will include a link to AccuWeather.com, but if the user enables the AccuWeather.com WISEApp, the search result will include a full graphical five-day weather forecast.
Defensio, the anti-spam service, offers an API that can be integrated into blogs and web sites to fight spam comments and other unwanted spam (details at our Defension API profile). The service appears to be run by a small team, and is similar in purpose to Akismet, the much larger spam filtering service from Automattic (which powers WordPress.com), who also offer an anti-spam API.
Magnify.net, a web service that allows individuals and companies to build and curate their own video channels and communities, has announced an API to enable developers to pull videos and data from their Magnify.net channels and integrate them into their own applications (details at our Magnify.net API Profile).
Skydeck announced their new APIs, with the objective of enabling developers to create applications that integrate personal cell phone data into their daily online experience, including email and calendars, Facebook, MySpace, and Salesforce. "Very few developers have ever had the chance to work with cell phone data, so we're excited to see what people come up with."
The fledgling location-based social networking service Brightkite, itself in limited beta, have announced the first release of its beta API (our API profile).
Tangler, an online network of discussion forums, recently announced their new API. The Tangler service takes traditional discussion forums to a new level, by allowing anyone to easily set up a discussion forum that can grow to include hundreds of topics and thousands of users.
What happens when the API is technically secure but the environment, whether widget, web site or mashup, is not? Recent security breaches in MySpace and Yahoo, which led to the release of semi-embarrassing photos of prolific celebs Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohan, points out the added opportunities for hackers in the open web.
Google announced Friend Connect today, a new service that will allow any web site to enable social networking features for their visitors. And the key piece of the strategy is that to do so only takes a few lines code, similar to the ease with which AdSense ads can be to any web page.
This week Microsoft announced a partnership with five of largest social networks to allow users to export their contacts from Windows Live directly into those services.