November 24, 2014
Single purpose API
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Baron has launched its Weather API and associated website to democratize the integration of weather information to apps, websites, platforms, and services. Data available through the API includes current conditions, forecasts, storm tracking, severe conditions, ETA for storm arrival and more.
It's funny that when I talk to people in the travel industry about mashups and APIs, most of them get glazed looks in their eyes. Throw in terms like location based services or geospatial awareness and I've lost them. What most of them don't realize is that the majority of the travel apps that are starting to come out, both online and for mobile are mashups that are relying on location awareness and geospatial data. Many of them, like Pocketvillage are a consumer interface on top of a variety of APIs all normalized for a single homogenous user experience. That's right, it's essentially a metasearch tool that pulls in content from a variety of sources including Viator, GetYourGuide, TourCMS, Rezgo, AirBnB, and many others. What differentiates a metasearch like Pocketvillage from other metasearch applications however, is the fact that with location based services enabled, Pocketvillage can return content based on your current location. The issue right now however is that not all geo data is equal. Not all APIs provide geolocation information and some return it based on different criteria.
Google has added one of the most popular features of its consumer Google Maps product to the Google Maps API. Predictive travel time is oft-used by consumers to find best routes, and avoid traffic. Now, developers have access to the feature and can integrate the functionality into third party apps.