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The role of APIs in Holland's
biggest IT project ever
Dimitri van Hees (@dvh)
• Co-founder Apiwise
• Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment
• Cadastre: Land Registry and Mapping Agency (NLS)
• Platform Linked Data Netherlands
• #Geo4Web testbed
Dimitri van Hees (@dvh)
• Co-founder Apiwise
• Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment
• Cadastre: Land Registry and Mapping Agency (NLS)
• Platform Linked Data Netherlands
• #Geo4Web testbed
• Co-founder Brouwtoren microbrewery
The Netherlands
• Since 1815
• 17 million inhabitants
• 41.543 square kilometers
• 18% water
• 55% below sea level
• 12 provinces
• 390 municipalities
• 24 water districts
• 94% internet coverage
Legislation
• Environment Index (air pollution, noise disturbance)
• Zoning (must allow production of foodstuff)
• National Building Registry
• National Customs Agency
• Dutch Food and Drug Administration
• Tax Authorities
• Chamber of Commerce
• Etcetera…
The Environmental Act
4700 articles
26 acts
349
articles
1 act
“The Dutch Environmental Act is one of the
largest legislative acts since the
establishment of The Netherlands in 1815
and is most-likely the largest government IT
challenge in its history.”
Hayke Veldman, member of the Dutch parliament
Government as a Startup
• Agile and Lean
• Proof Of Concepts
• Research tenders
• Dutch Startup Delta
• Big Data Graduate School
• Open Data project funding
• Machine-friendly data
• Developer-friendly data
The Geo World
• Mature standards for Spatial Data
• Data quality maintenance
• Kadaster Data Platform
• #Geo4Web testbed: Spatial Data on the Web
• W3C/OGC (Spatial) Data on the Web working group
“May I start a brewery here?”
Large Set of Unknown Devices
Large Set of Unknown Developers
Large Set of Unknown Users
Large Set of Unknown Clients
Machine-friendly data
• Crawlable Data (not to score in Google but to be
interpretable)
• Structured Data (add semantics, e.g.
http://schema.org markup)
• Linked Data (links to other datasets and added
semantics of own vocabularies)
Developer Experience (DX)
Facilitating better user experiences
by making app development easier
for developers.
"User Experience applied to developers,
because developers are people too!“
http://developerexperience.org
Time to First Successful Call
• Documentation
• Code examples
• Standards
• Compatibility
• Monitoring and feedback *
• Etc.
* working with API keys makes life a lot easier on this…
Content negotiation
HTML
text/html
JSON
application/json
GeoJSON
application/vnd.geo+json
JSON-LD
application/ld+json
RDF
application/n-triples
KML
application/vnd.google-earth.kml+xml
Caveats
• Only supporting the Accept header is not enough
• Alternative content-negotiation mechanisms (XML
sitemaps, GIS systems and humans don’t send
request headers)
• Alternative content structure (mobile phones use
different Coordinate Reference Systems than the
Dutch government, I don’t always want hypermedia
in my response)
Coordinates payload
Possible solutions
• Cluster (e.g. with ElasticSearch geo queries)
• Zoom out (less coordinates)
• Simplify (rounding of degrees: 5.1234 instead of
5.123456789)
• Compress (TopoJSON)
Use case specific
• Enhanced performance
• Enhanced User Experience
• Hell for the Environmental Act…
Let the unknown client decide!
Kadaster Data Platform
There is a lot of work to do and the
government can’t solve this alone. That’s
why they start to publish their data via as
much channels as possible so they can serve
the largest set of unknown clients. APIs
with advanced content negotiation support
for both machines and developers are
essential to succeed.
Thank you! Questions?
• https://github.com/geo4web-testbed
• http://www.apiwise.nl
• Twitter: @dvh, @joostfarla, @apiwise

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The role of APIs in Holland's biggest IT project ever

  • 1. The role of APIs in Holland's biggest IT project ever
  • 2. Dimitri van Hees (@dvh) • Co-founder Apiwise • Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment • Cadastre: Land Registry and Mapping Agency (NLS) • Platform Linked Data Netherlands • #Geo4Web testbed
  • 3. Dimitri van Hees (@dvh) • Co-founder Apiwise • Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment • Cadastre: Land Registry and Mapping Agency (NLS) • Platform Linked Data Netherlands • #Geo4Web testbed • Co-founder Brouwtoren microbrewery
  • 4. The Netherlands • Since 1815 • 17 million inhabitants • 41.543 square kilometers • 18% water • 55% below sea level • 12 provinces • 390 municipalities • 24 water districts • 94% internet coverage
  • 5.
  • 6. Legislation • Environment Index (air pollution, noise disturbance) • Zoning (must allow production of foodstuff) • National Building Registry • National Customs Agency • Dutch Food and Drug Administration • Tax Authorities • Chamber of Commerce • Etcetera…
  • 7.
  • 10. “The Dutch Environmental Act is one of the largest legislative acts since the establishment of The Netherlands in 1815 and is most-likely the largest government IT challenge in its history.” Hayke Veldman, member of the Dutch parliament
  • 11.
  • 12. Government as a Startup • Agile and Lean • Proof Of Concepts • Research tenders • Dutch Startup Delta • Big Data Graduate School • Open Data project funding • Machine-friendly data • Developer-friendly data
  • 13. The Geo World • Mature standards for Spatial Data • Data quality maintenance • Kadaster Data Platform • #Geo4Web testbed: Spatial Data on the Web • W3C/OGC (Spatial) Data on the Web working group
  • 14. “May I start a brewery here?”
  • 15.
  • 16.
  • 17.
  • 18.
  • 19. Large Set of Unknown Devices Large Set of Unknown Developers Large Set of Unknown Users
  • 20. Large Set of Unknown Clients
  • 21. Machine-friendly data • Crawlable Data (not to score in Google but to be interpretable) • Structured Data (add semantics, e.g. http://schema.org markup) • Linked Data (links to other datasets and added semantics of own vocabularies)
  • 23. Facilitating better user experiences by making app development easier for developers.
  • 24. "User Experience applied to developers, because developers are people too!“ http://developerexperience.org
  • 25. Time to First Successful Call • Documentation • Code examples • Standards • Compatibility • Monitoring and feedback * • Etc. * working with API keys makes life a lot easier on this…
  • 28.
  • 30.
  • 32.
  • 34.
  • 36.
  • 38.
  • 39. Caveats • Only supporting the Accept header is not enough • Alternative content-negotiation mechanisms (XML sitemaps, GIS systems and humans don’t send request headers) • Alternative content structure (mobile phones use different Coordinate Reference Systems than the Dutch government, I don’t always want hypermedia in my response)
  • 41.
  • 42.
  • 43. Possible solutions • Cluster (e.g. with ElasticSearch geo queries) • Zoom out (less coordinates) • Simplify (rounding of degrees: 5.1234 instead of 5.123456789) • Compress (TopoJSON)
  • 44. Use case specific • Enhanced performance • Enhanced User Experience • Hell for the Environmental Act…
  • 45.
  • 46. Let the unknown client decide!
  • 48.
  • 49.
  • 50. There is a lot of work to do and the government can’t solve this alone. That’s why they start to publish their data via as much channels as possible so they can serve the largest set of unknown clients. APIs with advanced content negotiation support for both machines and developers are essential to succeed.
  • 51. Thank you! Questions? • https://github.com/geo4web-testbed • http://www.apiwise.nl • Twitter: @dvh, @joostfarla, @apiwise