The Latest News On The API Economy
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On the Amazon cloud you could create many options for running databases in the cloud. A brief look at "Running databases on AWS" suggests comprehensive cloud as a database service resourcesoffered by Amazon. While Amazon RDS offers you the choice of MySQL, Oracle or SQL Server, Amazon DynamoDB offers you NoSQL storage while Amazon SimpleDB offers schemaless database.
Wading through reams of paperwork to gather data is no-one's cup of tea. Even in this day and age, not everything is achieved with the click of a mouse, and unfortunately, there are still many who have to sort through information gathered from hand written surveys, census forms and the like.
Earlier this month, the Huffington Post announced the release of the HuffPost Pollster API, which provides developers programmatic access to the results of thousands of political opinion polls gathered and published by the Huffington Post.
San Francisco startup Prior Knowledge recently released in public beta their predictive analytics API called Veritable. They want to enable every developer with big data prediction tools, without becoming a quant genius first. Just upload a dataset, execute analysis, make predictions and watch the sparks fly.
Your time is certainly worth more than 5 dollars an hour; why would you waste an hour performing a simple task that you could outsource for less than 5 dollars. Humanoid, a cloud workforce, is hoping that you see things this way. Humanoid has a 30,000+ person workforce on tap, waiting to perform all of your simple, yet crucial tasks. The company has developed a workflow that allows several workers to simultaneously perform the same task, then cross-references the results to ensure accuracy. If a discrepancy exists within the results, the task is sent to a highly rated worker for review. Humanoid provides the Humanoid API to allow developers to integrate this functionality into existing platforms.
Our API directory now includes 54 data APIs. The newest is the PicketReport Lifestyle API. The most popular, in terms of mashups, is the RapLeaf API. We list 6 RapLeaf mashups. Below you'll find some more stats from the directory, including the entire list of data APIs.
The ability to analyze information and use the results to make more informed decisions is something that interests a lot of people. Developers, publishers, and small to large business owners all collect an overwhelming amount of data pertaining to the work that they do. Employing a staff of analysts to sift through the onslaught of what can sometimes seem to be useless information is obviously one way to solve this problem, ‘Machine Learning’ is another.
I recently had my second conversation with Josh Williams, CSO of Kontagent, a leader in the world of big data. In our previous conversation we touched on the potential for PhD level mathematics students to apply their knowledge to the challenges in the big data space. By the end of this second conversation it became apparent to me that there is a huge opportunity to be seized by companies that can leverage big data systems.
Have you ever heard of a Chief Science Officer? I recently spoke to Kontagent’s CSO and was excited to learn that Kontagent’s world of big data processing is one of the few places in the world in which academic exercise is directly applicable to industry. Kontagent is a user analytics platform which can easily be integrated into any web site or mobile app. The ease of integration results from the decision to provide a RESTful Kontagent API.
Moonshadow Mobile is making US Census data available on a high performance platform. They have taken the data and geocoded it for Google and Bing maps. The service offering is a proprietary, patent pending system that is able to search through between 20 and 100 million census data records in under a second. Moonshadow has the full census data set, even down to individual voter registration records which only be released to office holders or government entities. The Moonshadow Mobile API offers developers access to a subset of this data.
If there’s a new dawn in the age of search, Datafiniti is the sun. They are the first to take a new and profound approach to search in years. Most search engines return a list of links to web pages, but Datafiniti has much bigger plans. Instead of links, they return a set of data. A search for a burrito in Texas would give you a list of restaurants complete with goodies like reviews in addition to the important bits like name and address. The dataset itself has been out there for years, but its the aggregartion and presentation that’s different. With the Datafiniti API, it is now possible for developers to easily integrate that data into web applications.
Last week I had the pleasure of attending the O’Reilly Strata Conference in New York City, and sat in on a very important keynote from Drew Conway and Jake Porway about their project, Data Without Borders. Data Without Borders is looking to match non-profits in need of data analysis with freelance and pro bono data scientists who can work to help them with data collection, analysis, visualization, or provide decision support.
Waiters like to work in pricey restaurants serving wealthy patrons because they are able to pay for high class service. That's also why you see so many professionals in the banking industry: it pays to work for people with money. Xignite took note of this and decided to become the Maitre'd of information to the financial industry. With more than 3.5 Billion calls per month to its Xignite APIs, it is doing a fine job of it, as well.
Kasabi has just moved into public beta. The private beta is over, and Kasabi is openly ready and willing to become your data marketplace. This is similar to what the primates over at InfoChimps are doing: building a community around data sets and APIs. The Kasabi API collection feels like a first attempt at standardizing the task of designing an API for accessing a dataset.
Do you remember what it was like to figure out what was going on in your city fifteen years ago? You probably called your friends. Less than 20% of U.S. households were online. People learned about local news and events from newspapers, TV and their friends. I remember a lot of nights that we were frustrated “nothing cool was going on.” Information was scarce, and people still paid for it.
The FCC is leading by example with its beta release of the FCC.gov website on Monday. In this latest version of the site, the FCC has worked hard to follow Web 2.0 principles, most notably building the entire website on top of RESTful APIs. “Everything should be an API”, FCC managing director Steve Van Roekel said during the press briefing, according to O'Reilly's report.
The number of “as a Service” types continues to grow and we are even seeing services that help you build your own service. PublishMyData falls into this category as it offers Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) which enables you to offer your Data as a Service (DaaS) and it supports linked data.
We've covered Factual a number of times, most recently asking if it will become the go-to location database. Now the company has expanded its offering with improved datasets, new datasets and a new iPhone SDK. Its local data now covers 27 countries and contains more than 30 million individual business listings.
Facebook's Big Year: A Whole New Approach to its API, New Types of User Data, and Major Deprecations
The Facebook API saw huge changes in 2010 that moved the service away from being a closed network and towards being a more open community. The leading social network site must be doing something right on that front. Facebook was the third most popular service for use in new mashups last year, nearly doubling its total number in our directory.