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Building API Products

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Building API Products
1
@samueljabiodun

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James Samuel
~8 years of experience making
software run
#Technical content creator
#Engineer #TechLead
#Speaker
#AWS Commu...

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3
HubOfML
Curated newsletter
for ML engineers,
software engineers,
and tech leaders.
https://hubofml.substack.com/

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Building API Products

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The fact that there is no hand-written manual or specification for approaching API products has given rise to various API designs. Perhaps the reason why integrating with APIs is often dreaded. In this talk, you will learn how to approach API products. You’ll start treating APIs as first-class citizens, revenue drivers as opposed to a code by-product. You will learn the secrets of building APIs that developers love to use.

The fact that there is no hand-written manual or specification for approaching API products has given rise to various API designs. Perhaps the reason why integrating with APIs is often dreaded. In this talk, you will learn how to approach API products. You’ll start treating APIs as first-class citizens, revenue drivers as opposed to a code by-product. You will learn the secrets of building APIs that developers love to use.

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Building API Products

  1. 1. Building API Products 1 @samueljabiodun
  2. 2. James Samuel ~8 years of experience making software run #Technical content creator #Engineer #TechLead #Speaker #AWS Community Builder 2 @samueljabiodun @abiodunjames @abiodunjames
  3. 3. 3 HubOfML Curated newsletter for ML engineers, software engineers, and tech leaders. https://hubofml.substack.com/
  4. 4. 4 #Join us to change mobility for good tier.app/jobs
  5. 5. 5 Feedback? feedbakly.com/GO5xyDt1FWKi43v
  6. 6. Creating API Products 6
  7. 7. API is eating the world
  8. 8. API has continued to gather popularity, grew by 100% in 2020 Postman: State of the API Report 8
  9. 9. ▪ Offers APIs to open up services e.g Twitter, Facebook, Salesforce, etc ▪ API-first companies e.g Stripe, Contentful, Twilio, Algolia etc 9
  10. 10. Good APIs are: ❏ Easy Learn ❏ Easy to use ❏ Hard not-easy to misuse ❏ Easy to read and maintain clients that use them ❏ Easy to evolve 10
  11. 11. Good API products make life easy 11
  12. 12. How do you make life easy?
  13. 13. Understand the “Why” and “How” 13
  14. 14. ▪ Why do you want to build an API? ▪ What problem will it solve? ▪ How will the API help me achieve my goals? 14
  15. 15. Example Goal: Drive usage and monetize internal services 15
  16. 16. The goal isn't always obvious …Ask 16
  17. 17. Design Matters 17
  18. 18. ➔ Vocabularies- Are your words, terms easy to understand for your users? ➔ Styles - What protocols are you supporting, Rest or GraphQL? ➔ Naturalness & Consistency: ◆ Do your users have to change their usual ways of solving their problems significantly? ◆ Did you follow established standards and conventions? ◆ What level of familiarity will you provide? Are you APIs similar to what your users may have used in the past?
  19. 19. “Great API products are designed with rigorous customer focus, a deep understanding of the customers, their needs and desires” 19
  20. 20. Approaching API Design ▪ Identify users & activities they want to get done ▪ Break down activities ▪ Create APIs & Validate using a use-case ▪ Build API prototype and client prototype ▪ Validate & Re-iterate 20
  21. 21. You won't get the first version of your APIs right. Some lessons can't be learned exclusively by customer interviews. 21
  22. 22. Aligning Affordance 22
  23. 23. Affordance is that property of an object which shows users the actions they can take.
  24. 24. Get Good at Documentation 25
  25. 25. What's one of the first things you look at with a third party API?
  26. 26. If you’re providing only one type of documentation, you’re undeserving your users. 27
  27. 27. ● Evaluation ● Integration ● Debugging
  28. 28. ● Who are you creating for? ● What are they trying to achieve? ● Why are you creating this?
  29. 29. Get Development Right 30
  30. 30. Instead of focusing on CRUD, focus on goals and the sequence of actions required to achieve them.
  31. 31. ● Scalability ● Maintainability ● Security ● Reliability ● Performance ● Security ● Testing
  32. 32. 33 Your APIs should hide complexities and not expose them
  33. 33. 34 Conclusion
  34. 34. 35 Can the API Product deliver on the strategic goals? Is the API Product quality enough to support the strategic goals? Track Effectiveness
  35. 35. 36 Questions?

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