A Preview of YAP: the Yahoo Application Platform

Last month developers at Yahoo!'s Open Hack Day got a sneak preview of the new Yahoo! Application Platform (YAP). YAP is in preview mode and not yet available for public use, although Documentation for the new service is available.

According to Yahoo!:

The Yahoo! Applications Platform (YAP) is the software and services that enable developers to build web applications that are available throughout Yahoo!-- the largest audience in the world. The Yahoo! Applications Platform has the following components:

  • Development environment - A browser-based tool that enables software developers to quickly create, preview, and publish web
  • APIs and web services - Programmatic access to OpenSocial functionality and popular Yahoo! web services.
  • Distribution and discovery infrastructure - The built-in features
    for publishing applications on galleries on web pages such as Yahoo! Profiles.
    End users can discover applications by searching or browsing within application galleries.
  • Runtime and rendering environment - The backend servers and software that run applications and convert the code into HTML.

As a platform, YAP can be used by developers to develop Open Applications, which Yahoo! describes as:

An Open Application is a web application that has been registered on the Yahoo! Development Network (YDN) and runs on the Yahoo! Application Platform (YAP). As seen by the end user, an Open Application has multiple views, Integration points, and components.

Open Application components include a Small View, Canvas View, and Chrome. Note that YAP provides support for social applications via OpenSocial.

Here's a video from the Yahoo! Open Hack Day that gives an overview of YAP:

We've included Christian Heilmann's presentation on Opening Yahoo! to User and Developers from the Future of Web Apps Conference (held in London, England last week).

Currently there is a PHP SDK available and developers should note that Yahoo! has followed Facebook's lead (along with numerous other platforms) by providing its own flavor of XML: Yahoo! Markup Language (YML). You can check out the reference documentation for YML, including YML Lite (a subset of YML).

Webmonkey.com has additional coverage (including screen shots) of YAP from the Open Hack Day event, and Ash Patel has compiled a list of blog posts about Yahoo!'s Hack Day and Open Strategy.

Certainly Yahoo has their share of APIs, with 32 Yahoo APIs in our directory, so there's a lot of potential for YAP and what this new platform could mean for Yahoo.