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The API- & APP-ification
of the Web
Steven Willmott
3scale networks
@3scale - http://www.3scale.net
(and possibly everything else)
This Work is Licensed Under Creative Commons
Creative Attribution 3.0
“Welcome to the App-
Economy”
“What will win? Apps v’s
HTML(5) ”
“The Death of the Open
Web?”
Some Hyperbole but..
There is probably something going on…
And some of has to do with
SPAs…
Single Page Web Applications
Server (REST / JSON
API)
Buttons
Infinite Scroll
Push Updates
Ember.js
Angular.js
Backbone.js
…
Single HTML Page & URL Per Page
many Pages per Site / App
Pages Server
Whole
Server
SPAs Serve a Single Page of HTML
and use in page controls to operate
dynamically
e.g….
(From http://www.angularjs.org)
Obvious Benefits of SPAs
• Lots of Benefits:
– Slick interfaces, Similarity to Mobile/Desktop
– App Speed, no need for Page Reloads
– Interface variants are easier
– Realtime / Push updates
• And Downsides:
– JS Skills at a premium, Less Tooling, Modern
Browsers Needed, Framework overload…
– (and a few others we’ll mention later)
Examples
Evernote: The Platform Imperative
e.g. Evernote
“Capture Everything - Access anywhere”
Mobile
Platforms
Desktop
Platforms
Web
Browsers
Top
Apps
App Like User Experience
https://www.evernote.com/Home.action#st=p&n=acfb0b6e-8681a424246c
https://www.evernote.com/Home.action#b=7bc900cc5876&st=p&n=a6d5-8681a424246c
Single Page
Param Driven
Zendesk: Speed and Slicks
e.g. Zendesk
Real Time
Updates
No Page
Redraws
Effectively a .js
App
API User
Community
• App.js Example
• Same Agility for All
• More Robust API
• 90+ Integrations
Value…
• Platform strategy
• Uniform user experience
• Fast, Responsive, No Page Reloads, Push
• API Enables 3rd Party Use, Javascript components
make that use easier
• Both also have: dev communities & mobile apps
Adoption and Impact on the Web
Who Will Adopt?
(assuming the tech works)
Mobile Natives
>> SAAS
>> Ecommerce
>> Content
Impact is
more
And more
radical
But there are issues…
Links?Referencin
g?
Crawling &
Indexing?
UI
Fragmentation?
…
Openness?
RSS
Following?
Discovery?
SEO?
Adoption Complexity & Disruption
Linking
Referencing
Seamless
Browsing
Discovery
Mobile Native
Businesses
OS Specific UI is App Specific App Store
SAAS Businesses In app is fine
UI is often
Specific
Primary Domain
Only
eCommerce
Businesses
Items need to be
addressable
from anywhere
Common Check
Out Metaphors
Are useful
Mostly for
Primary Domain
Content Businesses
Needs to
addressable
from anywhere
Expect
Consistent Web
UI
SEO is Critical
So – How do We Move Forward?
• Things we MUST Preserve:
– Link-a-bility
– Browse-a-bility
– Crawl/Index/Discover-a-bility
– Follow-a-bility
• And a new thing we want to Gain including:
– Script-a-bility
Technical Challenges
Changing Architecture of the Web
Link-a-bility
• Hyperlinking
• Fragment Referencability
• Web Links Still Work
• Fragments Still Work
• Param Schemes Need
to be Complete
• Avoid Header
Information
http://www.gluecon.com/….
• Links need to be immutable/persistent
• Always addressable in the same way
• Fragment Identifiers need the right
semantics
Browse-a-bility
• Automatically detect an
adequate handler for Content
• Possibly offer choices for
handlers
• Mobile Situation is
improving
• Browser Requirements
are a problem
• HTML5+JS are becoming
general compute canvas
• Huge problem is testing /
reliability
• Browsing needs to seemlessly navigate
between sites and always be able to
handle content automatically
• Android: URI Event Subscription Handlers
• IOS: Hard code apps to handle referals
Crawl/Index/Discover-a-bility
• Explore and Classify
Pages/Fragments
• Index, Rank and Return them
upon Search
• Not under the control of
Webmasters
• Early SEO fix “#” Fragment
URLS (Indexed by Google)
• Google allows Param
Includes (not clear how
strong)
• Reality: Chicken/Egg
Situation
• In addition to Linking
• Meta-data is critical
• Page Content is critical
• URL Content is critical
• “machine identification of content /
value”
Metadata Content
Reputation / Value
Follow-a-bility
• RSS Feeds for certain types of
content
• Have a Consistent Handle on
“what’s new”
• RSS Now has a limited
number of consumers
• “social” is touted as the
replacement
• Consistent APIs May be
helpful (but don’t exist yet)
• Replacement/Augementatio
n with PubSubHUb?
• Subscribe to a feed
• Receive every item on the feed (and not
miss any)
• Single Common Standard
• It’s Polling but Structured
Script-a-bility
• APIs form the basis for
interactions
• Events scripted across
sites/platforms
• APIs are starting to become
more widespread
• Standardization on oAuth is
Helping
• Still a ton of work to do the
plumbing
• Still sometimes a little
complex for the end user
• Underlying APIs expose functionality
• No human UI Interaction needed
• Scripting platforms allow simple
interactions to occur in an automated way
Conclusions
Beyond the Web
Live Scribe Pen
Text and Audio
$150
Smart
Notebook
Photo & Tags
New App
$25-30
Mobile
Desktop
Web
Physical
Other Examples:
Box + Printers & Scanners
Philips Hue
API Platform + Apps is Key for Mixing
Digital and Non-Digital
SPA Helps Align the Web with
everything else..
• Vast majority of Apps are still not SPA
• Most apps still “decide” between Native first v’s
HTML5 first
• Mobile commerce is mostly separated “Web”
commerce
• Most APIs feeding mobile are still hard wired into a
single Apps
• Auth on mobile and the Web are often still
completely different
• Physical devices now linking in
… isn’t this all obvious?
Not so much…
Next 2-3 years will see radical
change in mainstream usage
Big Ideas to Take Away
1
2
3
SPAs Will see increasing adoption
Potentially Disruptive Change to
the Web itself
Lots of work to do to make it
seamless & open
Thank you!
steve@3scale.net
@njyx, @3scale
We make Awesome API Management Tools:
http://www.3scale.net/
References
• http://blog.stevensanderson.com/2012/08/01
/rich-javascript-applications-the-seven-
frameworks-throne-of-js-2012/
• http://www.avc.com/a_vc/2012/12/rethinkin
g-mobile-first.html
• http://pandodaily.com/2012/12/06/html-
javascript-and-the-app-ification-of-the-web/

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The API and APP-ification of the Web

  • 1. The API- & APP-ification of the Web Steven Willmott 3scale networks @3scale - http://www.3scale.net (and possibly everything else)
  • 2. This Work is Licensed Under Creative Commons Creative Attribution 3.0
  • 3. “Welcome to the App- Economy” “What will win? Apps v’s HTML(5) ” “The Death of the Open Web?”
  • 4. Some Hyperbole but.. There is probably something going on…
  • 5. And some of has to do with SPAs…
  • 6. Single Page Web Applications Server (REST / JSON API) Buttons Infinite Scroll Push Updates Ember.js Angular.js Backbone.js … Single HTML Page & URL Per Page many Pages per Site / App Pages Server Whole Server SPAs Serve a Single Page of HTML and use in page controls to operate dynamically
  • 8. Obvious Benefits of SPAs • Lots of Benefits: – Slick interfaces, Similarity to Mobile/Desktop – App Speed, no need for Page Reloads – Interface variants are easier – Realtime / Push updates • And Downsides: – JS Skills at a premium, Less Tooling, Modern Browsers Needed, Framework overload… – (and a few others we’ll mention later)
  • 10. Evernote: The Platform Imperative e.g. Evernote “Capture Everything - Access anywhere” Mobile Platforms Desktop Platforms Web Browsers Top Apps
  • 11. App Like User Experience https://www.evernote.com/Home.action#st=p&n=acfb0b6e-8681a424246c https://www.evernote.com/Home.action#b=7bc900cc5876&st=p&n=a6d5-8681a424246c Single Page Param Driven
  • 12. Zendesk: Speed and Slicks e.g. Zendesk Real Time Updates No Page Redraws Effectively a .js App API User Community • App.js Example • Same Agility for All • More Robust API • 90+ Integrations
  • 13. Value… • Platform strategy • Uniform user experience • Fast, Responsive, No Page Reloads, Push • API Enables 3rd Party Use, Javascript components make that use easier • Both also have: dev communities & mobile apps
  • 14. Adoption and Impact on the Web
  • 15. Who Will Adopt? (assuming the tech works) Mobile Natives >> SAAS >> Ecommerce >> Content Impact is more And more radical
  • 16. But there are issues… Links?Referencin g? Crawling & Indexing? UI Fragmentation? … Openness? RSS Following? Discovery? SEO?
  • 17. Adoption Complexity & Disruption Linking Referencing Seamless Browsing Discovery Mobile Native Businesses OS Specific UI is App Specific App Store SAAS Businesses In app is fine UI is often Specific Primary Domain Only eCommerce Businesses Items need to be addressable from anywhere Common Check Out Metaphors Are useful Mostly for Primary Domain Content Businesses Needs to addressable from anywhere Expect Consistent Web UI SEO is Critical
  • 18. So – How do We Move Forward? • Things we MUST Preserve: – Link-a-bility – Browse-a-bility – Crawl/Index/Discover-a-bility – Follow-a-bility • And a new thing we want to Gain including: – Script-a-bility
  • 20. Link-a-bility • Hyperlinking • Fragment Referencability • Web Links Still Work • Fragments Still Work • Param Schemes Need to be Complete • Avoid Header Information http://www.gluecon.com/…. • Links need to be immutable/persistent • Always addressable in the same way • Fragment Identifiers need the right semantics
  • 21. Browse-a-bility • Automatically detect an adequate handler for Content • Possibly offer choices for handlers • Mobile Situation is improving • Browser Requirements are a problem • HTML5+JS are becoming general compute canvas • Huge problem is testing / reliability • Browsing needs to seemlessly navigate between sites and always be able to handle content automatically • Android: URI Event Subscription Handlers • IOS: Hard code apps to handle referals
  • 22. Crawl/Index/Discover-a-bility • Explore and Classify Pages/Fragments • Index, Rank and Return them upon Search • Not under the control of Webmasters • Early SEO fix “#” Fragment URLS (Indexed by Google) • Google allows Param Includes (not clear how strong) • Reality: Chicken/Egg Situation • In addition to Linking • Meta-data is critical • Page Content is critical • URL Content is critical • “machine identification of content / value” Metadata Content Reputation / Value
  • 23. Follow-a-bility • RSS Feeds for certain types of content • Have a Consistent Handle on “what’s new” • RSS Now has a limited number of consumers • “social” is touted as the replacement • Consistent APIs May be helpful (but don’t exist yet) • Replacement/Augementatio n with PubSubHUb? • Subscribe to a feed • Receive every item on the feed (and not miss any) • Single Common Standard • It’s Polling but Structured
  • 24. Script-a-bility • APIs form the basis for interactions • Events scripted across sites/platforms • APIs are starting to become more widespread • Standardization on oAuth is Helping • Still a ton of work to do the plumbing • Still sometimes a little complex for the end user • Underlying APIs expose functionality • No human UI Interaction needed • Scripting platforms allow simple interactions to occur in an automated way
  • 26. Beyond the Web Live Scribe Pen Text and Audio $150 Smart Notebook Photo & Tags New App $25-30 Mobile Desktop Web Physical
  • 27. Other Examples: Box + Printers & Scanners Philips Hue API Platform + Apps is Key for Mixing Digital and Non-Digital
  • 28. SPA Helps Align the Web with everything else..
  • 29. • Vast majority of Apps are still not SPA • Most apps still “decide” between Native first v’s HTML5 first • Mobile commerce is mostly separated “Web” commerce • Most APIs feeding mobile are still hard wired into a single Apps • Auth on mobile and the Web are often still completely different • Physical devices now linking in … isn’t this all obvious? Not so much… Next 2-3 years will see radical change in mainstream usage
  • 30. Big Ideas to Take Away 1 2 3 SPAs Will see increasing adoption Potentially Disruptive Change to the Web itself Lots of work to do to make it seamless & open
  • 31. Thank you! steve@3scale.net @njyx, @3scale We make Awesome API Management Tools: http://www.3scale.net/