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APIs: What Are They and What Do They Do?

FeaturedPost APIs What Are They and What Do They Do - APIs: What Are They and What Do They Do?

APIs or Application Programming Interfaces had been a common term for software developers since the 1960s.

However, there’s no denying that it’s only been now that it became very popular.

Put simply, the applications and software that you’re using now won’t be the same without the use of APIs.

And it’s only been recently that they’ve discovered the importance of such a programming process.

An API strategy is perhaps one of the most important techniques that software developers are using now, so there’s really no reason for you to ignore it.

So, here’s a complete guide about API so you may know what every successful developer knows and hopefully, you can use it to improve your next projects.

A Demonstration of API

There are many uses of API in mobile as well as on browsers. They’re responsible for many tasks. They start working with every few clicks you make.

A great example is when you book a plane ticket. When searching, as you add your criteria one by one, the API of the travel company is crawled. It then gives you the results of your search.

It helps you order things online, schedule appointments, download your favorite series, and more. However, it’s only been recent that APIs got the attention of many.

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What is an API?

API is known as Application Programming Interface. While it’s basically a phrase, you can separate the meaning into these three words.

The “Application” part is the part of the program that manages the inputs as well as the outputs you provide the software.

The “Programming” will then translate that input into the output. So, after the Application receives the input, Programming turns it into output, then comes back to Application.

The “Interface” is basically the platform that you use to access the Application and Programming.

These three aspects of APIs are essential. Without one of them, you won’t be able to make the software work. The best scenario is that you’ll have numerous issues.

That’s why it’s important to master the arts of developing APIs to the point that you no longer make any mistake.

What do APIs do?

APIs facilitates the attempts of a user to reach the server. This is done by simply connecting to the web.

This will then allow the developers to tap into the databases using the application or sites, which will display an open-source software.

You can say that APIs are a universal connection through many databases which offers a set of instructions to users.\

PostImage APIs What Are They and What Do They Do components - APIs: What Are They and What Do They Do?

The Components of APIs

APIs consist of shared assets. You can consider these as the pieces of codes, services, data, or software that the company owns, which means they are of value.

Then the gateway of the API which helps them connect to any point of the web through the server.

There’s also the end user which helps you access these components. All of these parts, just like the three aspects of API, cannot work alone and therefore needs help from each of them.

There are many problems faced by software developers, and ironically, at the end of the day, these problems are solved through the use of various software. Having sufficient knowledge about APIs is beneficial for software developers like you.

This just proves how important it is to constantly look for better strategies even with your current skills.

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2 Key Terms You Should Know About APIs

FeaturedPost 2 Key Terms You Should Know About APIs - 2 Key Terms You Should Know About APIs

Anyone who has tried using API knows how complicated the process is. There are lots of things to keep in mind before starting to use the program.

But there are certain terms that you’ll have to really know the meaning of. These are those key factors that determine the success of the implementation of APIs.

So our team at Digital Expansion worked through many case studies to determine what these key factors are and how it works so you may learn how to use them.

PostImage 2 Key Terms You Should Know About APIs response - 2 Key Terms You Should Know About APIs

Response time

Response time in APIs refers to the amount of time it takes for the system to respond to any request made.

A great example is how long it takes for the API to react the instant it receives a command from the main server.

This is one of the most important terms since you’ll be relying on this factor to determine the best API for your software.

PostImage 2 Key Terms You Should Know About APIs latency - 2 Key Terms You Should Know About APIs

Latency

This is related to Response Time, but it mainly involves the delay that occurs from the receipt of the request to the response.

You’ve probably already experienced such delays. That’s what we call Latency in terms of APIs.

In addition to the response time, the latency affects the time it takes before the API is contacted.

Response time and latency greatly affect a program when it uses the API sequence. If you’re not capable of understanding it, you have no chance of fixing any issue with them involved. So, it’s important that you are knowledgeable about these key terms.

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The Secret Behind API Outages and How to Handle It

FeaturedPost The Secret Behind API Outages and How to Handle It - The Secret Behind API Outages and How to Handle It

Have you ever wondered why APIs sometimes experience outages?

API outages are one of the most frustrating issues that software developers often encounter, at least those that use APIs.

We know very well how important APIs are, so there’s really no point in not using it just because of outages. But sometimes, the cost and frequency of such occurrences are very annoying.

Here we look at the way there are API outages, the cost of such events, and the importance of it to you as a software developer.

PostImage The Secret Behind API Outages and How to Handle It Reliable - The Secret Behind API Outages and How to Handle It

Reliability and Availability

Giants of the software development industry have more advanced APIs than others. That’s why they rarely experience API outages.

However, it goes without saying that outages can and will happen once in a while. It’s just that reliability depends on how high-end the technology is.

The uptime or availability of the software also depends on this factor, since API is needed for certain software to work.

Why do APIs have outages?

The concept of API outages is nothing new. But that’s not to say it’s been this common in its early days.

It’s also known by software developers that it’s mostly caused by reusing codes maintained by others.

This is the root of API outages, but we can’t do anything about it because the benefits of such practice outweigh the losses from API outages.

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Cost of API outages

The costs of API outages vary according to the duration, timing, as well as the industry of the business affected.

However, the average costs from one outage are over $15 million, and that’s for the large companies.

Those in the small-scale industry may incur fewer costs for each API outage.

However, it’s important to remember that bad timing may result in hundreds of millions of dollars.

Other Factors Affecting the Costs of API Outages

There are other factors that affect the costs of any API outage. Take note, however, that these are what software developers usually use to estimate the risks.

One factor is the CPI of the software or Cost-Per-Install. Then there are the conversion and retention percentages.

These are the factors that directly affect the cost, but the downtime will also result in losses.

PostImage The Secret Behind API Outages and How to Handle It api - The Secret Behind API Outages and How to Handle It

Reduce the Cost of an API outage

There are many ways to reduce the cost of an API outage. One is monitoring your app and responding to any issues regularly.

Another is using campaigns that keep tabs on user acquisition, so you don’t waste any time on just simply checking the traffic.

The easiest way, though, is using software that handles this task automatically.

The way the technology is now, API outages is definitely possible. The only thing you can do is to prepare for such occurrences and ensure that you’re aware of when the problem started.

This way, you won’t be wasting time and you can take the necessary steps to reduce the risks of API outages for your application.