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Services, Apps and the API Powered Web

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Talk given for CTUs Open Informatics Program. Focuses on the shift from Browser focused web pages to APIs and Applications (Apps) - covering trends, business models, architecture and the emerging ...

Talk given for CTUs Open Informatics Program. Focuses on the shift from Browser focused web pages to APIs and Applications (Apps) - covering trends, business models, architecture and the emerging Internet Operating System

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http://webspace.typepad.com 225
http://www.linkedin.com 18
http://feeds.feedburner.com 8
http://peetch.com 3
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  • Facebook: Sept 2009: 300mil, Feb 2010: 400mil, June 2010: 500mil, current internet population is approx 2B (or 28%) http://www.internetworldstats.com/stats.htm, http://business.rediff.com/slide-show/2010/sep/03/slide-show-1-tech-internet-users-in-2015-top-7-nations.htm, http://www.digitalfamily.com/mobilewebdesign/2009/08/smartphones-will-overtake-computers-in-2011/, http://www.electronics.ca/presscenter/articles/1247/1/Global-Smartphones-Market-to-Reach-80442-Million-Units-by-2015/Page1.html, http://www.forrester.com/ER/Press/Release/0,1769,1340,00.html, http://www.sys-con.com/node/1317657
  • eBay isn’t a “webpage” – it’s a clearing house. Amazon isn’t a website – it’s a ecommerce system, it’s a web services platform.
  • http://developer.ebay.com/devzone/xml/docs/HowTo/FirstCall/MakingCallXML.html
  • Inspired by http://www.outcut.de/MooFlow/example-json.html
  • This breakdown is not 100% comprehensive, but many currently public APIs can be classified against it. We use this at 3scale to identify the primary areas of value being created by an API.
  • Key point/focus here is charging directly for the operation on the API (1-1 relationship between operations ordered and payment): “utility computing” can apply to messaging, CPU time, storage, transaction processing etc. – primarily used for “Infrastructure as a Service” type APIs. Twitter arguable fits here also since it charges for access to it’s full data feed.
  • This category is for APIs which enable and extend a product in a significant way – making those products more useful, integrating them more tightly with customer systems, third parties, mobile devices etc. Here there may be a direct revenue relationship which can be calculated between how much the API is used and the revenue generated by the main product. The category can increase both depth of use and breadth of reach for a product. The Salesforce API allows both third party applications to run on top of Salesforce (or on dedicated hosting such as Appirio) and connection from customer/third party server applications.
  • This category uses the API as a dynamic promotion channel – providing useful but limited content / features to third parties in order to promote usage of the core service. eBay, Amazon and others engage in this through affiliate programs – the API “supports” the affiliate program by allowing third parties to “suck out” exactly the right product meta data to display to their users. Amazon also exposes valuable product popularity data in order to help partners what to display.
  • This category is often combined with others but essentially uses the API as a way to generate value back into the core product by capturing data rather than releasing it. Twitters traffic is free on the API to write but in turn creates huge value for twitter in republishing back to it’s user base, the youtube API similarly allows for video upload, Foursquare gathers check-in data. How the data is monetised after collection is not connected to the API in general.
  • - Model is your data- Controller is the business logic- View is how you experience it
  • - Model is your data- Controller is the business logic- View is how you experience it
  • Example: UNDATA.org: enourmous value, but trapped in some other format.Wine.com – huge value in wine data: now open. Softonic, the same
  • http://radar.oreilly.com/2010/03/state-of-internet-operating-system.html (this isn’t necessarilly a layer diagram – but there is a rough ordering of features)
  • There is more – Tim Berners Lee says it better than me. Large social-networking sites are walling off information posted by their users from the rest of the Web. Wireless Internet providers are being tempted to slow traffic to sites with which they have not made deals. Governments—totalitarian and democratic alike—are monitoring people’s online habits, endangering important human rights.

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