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API Glossary Posted 3 days ago

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When it comes to APIs, there’s a lot of jargon out there. The meaning of certain terms isn’t always obvious, and API providers sometimes use different ones to refer to the same thing.

That’s why we created an API glossary. It contains the terminology we use on our site and in our documentation, as well as related words and common acronyms.

- If you’re just starting out with APIs you can get the foundational knowledge you need to dive right into API use, design, and development.

- If you need to explain APIs to a non-technical, instead of mumbling something from the RFC, you can find useful and authoritative definitions all in one place.

- If you’re looking to make your own API this can help structure your thinking and design patterns, as well as improve your documentation.

It’s hosted on Github so anyone can contribute through a pull request or by submitting an issue.

And once you’re done learning about APIs at the glossary, get some hands on experience at Mashape. Sign up for a free account today.

Mashape Rocks a Thursday Night Posted 8 months ago

Thanks to our friend Mustafa Khan and everyone at Innovation Endeavors we got an early start to the weekend.  Last night DJ Effit kept the party going and chef Mark Mullan prepared the best guacamole and quesadillas we’ve every tasted.  Thanks guys!

Artist George Lin dropped by Mashape’s office and created an amazing cityscape of San Francisco.  We asked our guests to sign their names and add a little color to the mural.  Looks incredible, don’t you think?

Have a great weekend – party like a Mashaper!

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Congratulations to our #Angelhack NYC Mashape category winners! Posted 10 months ago

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We would like to congratulate the two teams that won the Mashape categories at AngelhackNYC!  Awesome job guys! We look forward to opening up opportunities for you by promoting your hacks with the Mashape community, and connecting you with developers/entrepreneurs/businesses that might take interest :)

Also, congratulations to the AngelhackNYC grand prize winner Kronicle! As well as the 70+ teams that participated in AngelhackNYC.  We’d reach out to everyone soon!

And finally, thanks to the organizers of Angelhack and Huge for arranging a well-attended hackathon in New York.

Without further ado, our winners!

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Gluecon 2013 - Mashape demos and links on Machine Learning Posted 10 months ago

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Last week at Gluecon 2013, we had the opportunity to show some cool demos that demonstrate the breadth and sophistication of APIs you can discover and use in Mashape.  We focused on Machine Learning, Natural Language Processing, and Sentiment Analysis APIs.  

Below are links to demos shown during the presentation, as well as links to relevant news and references that point out to the growing popularity and importance of machine learning in the API realm.

Enjoy!

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Yoda teaches APIs Posted 12 months ago

Into APIs now, Yoda is…  

Mashape Launches To The Public. Now open to every Developer and API. Posted 1 year ago

Hello mashapers,

We’re super excited to tell you that we’re now officially open for every API and every developer in the world. We’re now powering more than 400 APIs and thousands of developers are relying on Mashape APIs, everyday. We can’t wait to hear your thoughts and feedback in the coming weeks.

To be part of the movement, you can simply join us on Mashape.

Hacker note: for those sad developers that were using the Face.com API (for face detection), we now have an amazing free replacment created by Lambda Labs

—> http://www.mashape.com/lambda/face

Mashape has added some useful features in the last year: For API providers, it now provides a ready-to-go billing system for their APIs with custom plans for private customers, the ability to charge for specific objects (SMS, MB, calls, data points, etc), auto-generated documentation and client libraries, an issues system in case the API is malfunctioning, and powerful distribution via a community of developers. For API consumers, it gives a unified place to consume multiple APIs. Mashape is the only place where you can subscribe to any API using just a single credit card, consume APIs using just the Mashape Keys and analyze the usage of all APIs consumed through its Consumer Console.

We have a lot of surprises in the pipeline and we’ll stay focused on improving the happiness and the experience of the Mashape community. 


Cheers,

mashapers

Designing an API the Right Way Posted 1 year ago

Everyone and their dog’s are building API’s these days. Most new apps/services have some kind of API and almost every app uses at least one API. I was hacking on a project a couple of years back and I remember one of the dev’s on the project mentioning that we should have an API. At the time I thought he was crazy. We hadn’t even launched the product so why would anyone want to use our API, let alone our App. Our app eventually failed, mostly to ourselves. We out grew it, moved on to bigger and better ventures, but looking back he was right. We should have had an API. It may not have failed. 

When you start to build your API ask yourself, is your app going to be valuable to someone? Are you solving someone’s pain point or are you adding to the noise? API’s like Twillo, Stripe, Salesforce, Dropbox and Twitter add value to the world. Is your API going to be a service like Twillo or Stripe, where your core business providing core level functionality to someone else’s app? Are you going to build an app with the goal of having people add value to your product like Twitter. Someone will likely not want to use an API if it adds no value to the community/world.

A great API is planned and designed well. Two questions you should be asking your self when designing you API are, what are the goals or goal of this API and who will be using this API? You need to start asking yourself questions like what protocols and data formats are you going to us. How are you going to lock down your app? Open source framework or build it from the ground up? 

When it comes to approaches you have tons of options. You have REST, SOAP and XML-RPC just to name a few. The most popular in today’s APIs is REST. RESTful APIs are simple to use, and the amount of data you send is much smaller when commpared to SOAP. You also may want to base your choice on who your audience is? Some people may just love SOAP. Xnigte has 50+ financeAPIs and close to 5 billion+ calls each month. For data format you again have tons of choices but the main one again is going to be JSON.

Your API needs to be flexible. What makes an API flexible? It provides choices for data formats, protocols, and what version you want to use. Gives developers control of partial queries and updates, and batch operations. You offer advanced options like web hooks, streaming, and caching.

Something else you’ll want to keep in mind is what your Time to first “Hello World” is. You want to make it really easy for a developer who’s new to your platform to get up and running. There are a few way you can do that. Make it clear what you do.  Take Stripe’s home page for example.

You instantly know what the kind of problem the API solves, who it’s aimed at and what it does.  You also will want to offer a free or trail period. Get your users hooked, then sink your hooks into their wallets. Make it fast and easy to sign up. Again look at Stripe.

It’s so fast you can even skip over the signup process to get going. You need well organized and well written docs. They need to be clear and easy to understand. You are also going to want to have lots of examples of code, for as many languages as you can. The more you can people started in the right direction the better off you are. If you can provide tools to for a user to start playing with data then your even further along.

Your API needs to be managed. You need to mange things like security, key management, monitoring, reporting, scaling, rate limiting, and versioning. One other thing great API’s do is measure. Things like Traffic (total calls, top methods, call chains, quota faults), your service(Status), and your support, (tickets, response times, community metrics). These things can make or break your application.

Your going to want to provide great support. What makes your API supported? Great developer experience. This starts with the signup and includes everything from guides, to references, SDKs, to the pricing. Great support and evangelism teams that are active, engaged, listening, responding, and are at events. Your API needs to have communication and community in the forms of forums, a blog, social media, email support, and have an app gallery show casing the best.

Now you have the tools to build an amazing API go build it and add it to Mashape. ;-)

Small feature: login with your username Posted 2 years ago

While we are working on a lot of big features for the upcoming version of Mashape, we have added a small feature, that our users asked us:

now you can login using your email or your username (case insensitive)

 

Stay tuned.. something big is about to happen!