The API Economy

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The construction of interstate railroads in the 19th century was a catalyst to more efficient and effective inter-state business throughout the US. In the 20th century, the telephone, inter-state highways, and the web provided similar benefits. In the 21st century, a prerequisite for the next leap in economic advancement is a simple way to integrate disparate business systems and enable cross-platform communications. This requirement is realized through RESTful services.

With RESTful services, market-places that support Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) providers and consumers are possible. These market-places will provide consumers the ability to discover SaaS providers, and will also provide processes to facilitate business partnerships.

Join us in this session as we go back in time to see how we got here and ponder the possibilities that lie ahead. We’ll take a look back at approaches that have been used in distributed systems engineering, and we’ll identify what’s different this time around. In closing, we’ll identify the challenges to players in the “API Economy”, all the while making a case for why we should all jump in.

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The API Economy

  1. 1. http://www.ServiceDesignPatterns.com Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  2. 2. About Me • Consultant, coach, trainer • • • • Web Service and API design REST SOA Distributed systems engineering • Past Positions • Director of Architecture, Monster.com • Manager of Application Development, Fidelity.com • Etc. • • • • Author of Service Design Patterns Frequent speaker at technology conferences Podcasts, e-zine articles Microsoft MVP Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  3. 3. Enabling Technologies Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  4. 4. The Internet is the New Highway! Thanks Al! Web APIs are a compelling new destination! Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  5. 5. Application Programming Interface Defines how client developers invoke … Native platform functions Remote functions Enables client developers to create new solutions e.g. Amazon Web Services Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  6. 6. We’re Talking About APIs for Distributed Systems Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  7. 7. “Logical computers” are assigned responsibility for individual tasks in a larger goal Communication occurs through “messages” Computer memory is not shared Note: not referring to clustered machines Lack of central controller and “time clock” Asynchronous, parallel processing Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  8. 8. To scale and tune specific functions e.g. web servers, database servers, etc. This concept is often scaled to higher abstraction levels … e.g. functional business areas Workload distribution http://www.seti.org Fault-tolerance Natural divisions of labor Client apps (e.g. mobile, desktop) and server Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  9. 9. Unreliable, slow networks Latency and bandwidth Changing network topologies and protocols Multiple administrators And they’re all human!!! Security Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  10. 10. Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  11. 11. How did we get here? Let’s look back Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  12. 12. Early Conferences Symposium on Principles of Distributed Computing 1982 International Symposium on Distributed Computing 1985 TCP Socket programming Berkeley sockets, 1983 2-Tier Client-Server, 1980s, 1990s 3-Tier/N-Tier, 1990s, 2000s Distributed objects (i.e. CORBA, DCOM) Peer-to-Peer, 1990s and on SOAP/WSDL, 2000s RESTful Web APIs, 2000s Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  13. 13. Simplicity  productivity Standardized, truly cross-platform Choices Each platform has a plethora of frameworks to choose from All implementing the same simple approach Framework selection often determined by “stylistic differences” vs. capabilities Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  14. 14. Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  15. 15. “A global market-place in which providers of automated “business services” compete for the attention of client developers” … Rob Daigneau Relies on Web APIs i.e. HTTP specification, RFC 2616 Web APIs allow companies to Easily create and publish Business Services i.e. SaaS offerings Monetize these offerings Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  16. 16. Thought Leadership We have an opportunity to define a new “platform” and (industry) standard Gravitational Pull, Lock-in, e.g. …. Sabre (reservation systems) Microsoft (developer platform) SalesForce (Force.com) Apple (iTunes marketplace) Facebook (Social Graph) Several Revenue Opportunities Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  17. 17. What Lies Ahead? Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  18. 18. The API must be simple, intuitive, and flexible Service Level Agreements (SLAs) How to monetize? Per transaction, subscriptions, other? How do customers find (or become aware of) your services? Forget the UDDI approach How do you evolve your API and meet the needs of different clients? Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
  19. 19. Copyright 2013, Rob Daigneau, All Rights Reserved
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