It was near the end of 2014 when we first started conceiving of the idea of ProgrammableWeb’s API University. With more than a decade of publishing tutorials, how-to’s, and other prescriptive content when it comes to both the provisioning and consumption of APIs, one of the biggest challenges when visiting ProgrammableWeb was finding that content. It was like those books that are buried in the stacks at your college library. Somewhere, there’s a librarian with encyclopedic knowledge of every shelf in the stack — but you needed him or her to actually find the text you were looking for. Despite Google, the same was pretty much true of ProgrammableWeb. Somewhere, buried in our stacks, was all this great content. But it was anybody’s guess what that content was and when it might make sense to link it to a related story or otherwise draw attention to it.
And thus, the idea of ProgrammableWeb’s API University was born. The first objective was to dig through our stacks and to make an inventory of all the content that fit the bill; that’s to say that it was instructive in some form. The next objective was rig our content management system to tag that content in a way that we could not only categorize it for inclusion in API University, but that we could also additionally classify it as being the basic 101-level stuff that anyone breaking into APIs should read or, of if it was just for API providers, consuming developers, or executives with a low tolerance of the technical mumbo jumbo. Then we had to build some navigation to it (navigation that’s now clearly evident across our site but is still a work in progress). And lastly, we had to look for the gaps. What sort of content was missing that we should develop to better help our audience wherever they might be in their API journey?
As we built out API University and started to develop that content, we also realized that some of our 101-level material could also serve as the basis of some live training and last month (May 2016), we built and ran our first prototype of a full day class that we called Succeeding With APIs. The attendees gave us great feedback, overwhelmingly telling us that we hit the nail on the head and this encouraged us to take the next step; to do an online version of the class.
The result is ProgrammableWeb’s APIs 101: Succeeding With APIs, currently scheduled to be offered as an online class on June 30, 2016. This means that anyone can attend from wherever they are. The all day class is primarily designed for those of you near the beginning of your journey when it comes to providing APIs. Maybe you’ve been hearing about APIs through the mainstream media and want to know what all the fuss is about. What are APIs? How do they work? What are some good reasons for providing them? Or maybe you want to learn about the various organizational roles that will have to be addressed in order to maximize the chance of your API strategy’s success. Or maybe you just want to get your hands dirty by setting up an API and seeing how easy it is to work with it from the client side.
Whatever your motivations are, if you’re looking to get smart about APIs, then this crash course — led by me -- should make for a great ice-breaker. Questions? Send them my way to firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll do my best to answer them. Otherwise, I hope to “see” you there on June 30!