March 12, 2006

Shaun Inman – "10 reasons why you need to build an API"

Posted in Future of Web Apps, Software at 19:08 by graham

Shaun Inman is the creator of Mint. He gave a presentation at the Future Of Web Apps (futureofwebapps) conference, held in London on Wednesday 8th February. It was a short presentation with little elaboration of the 10 reasons, followed by a lengthy Q&A session.

An API takes a good thing and makes it better. API must not change.

API allows external extension of your application. A plugin architecture allows internal extension.

The 10 reasons are:

  • Increase brand awareness
  • Allow users to own their data
  • Build goodwill with developers
  • A perfect excuse for a community
  • Solving programming problems with an API in mind can improve code quality
  • Simplify internal reuse of data
  • Allow others to extend the functionality of your application
  • Alternate input mechanisms
  • Unanticipated applications of your data
  • Turn your program into a platform

    The initial Mint release only supported Firefox and Safari (not IE), to cut down on the support calls by only having technical users.

    See also Larsz’s mind map.

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