Welcome!

Open Source Cloud Authors: Jnan Dash, Elizabeth White, David Bermingham, Anders Wallgren, Jason Bloomberg

Blog Feed Post

How APIs Fuel Innovation

This article originally appeared on ProgrammableWeb.

There has been so much talk about APIs and how they add additional revenue channels, create brand new partnerships, allow business partners to integrate with ease, and how they help with promoting your brand. But an important and underlooked aspect, which happens to be a byproduct of this new paradigm shift, is the faster innovation channel they provide. Yes, Mobile First and the API economies are enabled by APIs.

picture1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of the major issues of B2B integration and partner/community-based application development in the past was not only that we gave developers specific limited building blocks but also a set of very rigid interfaces. When combined with tight governance (GRC), security and unreasonable restrictions, essentially it gave the developer community a steel cage to build things inside. This used to allow no leeway, no room for imagination, and certainly thinking out of the box was verboten. The complex interfaces that were handed over to the partner developers and the fixed data exchange models required someone to understand technology deeply and demanded use of very sophisticated integration tools to build these B2B data exchanges. It took months, sometimes years, to build them. When the interface, data model, or the backend system changed, we had to do this all over again.

I’m reminded of an old pirate movie I saw decades ago. In it, someone loaded their gun with gun powder and shot, only to miss the target. That person followed up by trying to reload the gun with gun powder (after uttering an expletive, of course) before a pirate charged him with a sword. In a similar fashion, if we missed the target/goal with what we built, we had to reload the work with our “gun powder”. The problem with that model is that in most cases, we rebuilt from end to end which cost us too much money, too many resources, and took too much time while tying up our entire developer force.

Then came the revolution – the API revolution.  This was specifically created to address the issues that were faced by businesses, or entities, when working with developer communities, both internal and external (B2D – Business2Developer, as it is called sometimes). In this model, we are opening up the proverbial steel cage (or shackles). We provide very standardized API interfaces that have well-defined contracts, are version-controlled and have carefully managed life cycles. Yes, the APIs most times are very simple – especially if they are REST-based. With that, we did not limit this to just our developer partners, but rather we opened this up to a society of capable developers who were hungry to make newer things happen. By providing a cleaner entry point into our assets (data, process, systems, platforms, etc.) we asked them to dream up and build something unique, by showing their differentiation and their value add to us and to our customers. This fueled the innovation from the bright minds who wanted to prove their half of the finished product was better than the thousands of other developers who were trying to build something similar using the same baseline. This is where innovation happened. I deal with major corporate customers who are rushing to expose their assets to these bright, out of the box thinkers, and surely enough, those brilliant minds rush to build something unique thereby adding value to each other in the process. Let those bright minds innovate, build, test, deploy, and bring you additional revenue while you enforce, control, and protect your assets in the right way. The key is not only to create APIs out of your existing systems but provide APIs that are enterprise-grade level. This includes security, governance, and scalability but still provides usability factors the users are looking for. Check out how Intel API management solutions can help you with creating, protecting, and providing enterprise grade APIs here.

As innovation and integration continues to improve, now the internal developers are demanding that they participate in the innovation spiral along with the external developers. The data and asset holders are excited about that because the internal developers can take this up a notch. They can create innovative internal solutions using the secret sauce that may not be sharable with external developers, or partners, due to sensitivity of the assets. Now I see that a lot of companies are creating two different channels, one for external developers and one for internal developers. With this there is a new need to have an external facing developer API portal and internal facing API catalog systems that will expose little more than the external portal. Though a lot of companies claim that they will cut off the external portal and developers, I don’t see that happening in the near future. On the contrary, they both need to work in tandem in a harmonized way to get the full potential out of the assets. We at Intel are the very first ones to realize that and have developed a solution that will offer both external and internal API developers a set of rich enablement functions. Check out Intel API Management solutions portal for more information.

One final point I want to discuss. People seem to often mix up open interface and flexible data access with open source. While it is possible to build one on top of other, care should be exercised when you build all of these on top of open stack and open yourself up for insecure or non-enterprise grade solutions.

As my dad used to tell me many times, “Tell them what to do, not how to do it. People will surprise you with their creation.” It is time to open up your locked assets and let the creative developer community put their magic dust to work to create multiple beautiful stories out of it.

I will be speaking on this very topic at Defrag in Broomfield on Nov 4-6. Please stop by my API speaking session if you are attending this event or anywhere in CO on those days. It is worth it.

- By Andy Thurai (Twitter: @AndyThurai)

The post How APIs Fuel Innovation appeared first on Application Security.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Application Security

This blog references our expert posts on application and web services security.

@ThingsExpo Stories
With the Apple Watch making its way onto wrists all over the world, it’s only a matter of time before it becomes a staple in the workplace. In fact, Forrester reported that 68 percent of technology and business decision-makers characterize wearables as a top priority for 2015. Recognizing their business value early on, FinancialForce.com was the first to bring ERP to wearables, helping streamline communication across front and back office functions. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Kevin Roberts...
Cognitive Computing is becoming the foundation for a new generation of solutions that have the potential to transform business. Unlike traditional approaches to building solutions, a cognitive computing approach allows the data to help determine the way applications are designed. This contrasts with conventional software development that begins with defining logic based on the current way a business operates. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Judith S. Hurwitz, President and CEO of Hurwitz & ...
One of the bewildering things about DevOps is integrating the massive toolchain including the dozens of new tools that seem to crop up every year. Part of DevOps is Continuous Delivery and having a complex toolchain can add additional integration and setup to your developer environment. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 18th Cloud Expo, Miko Matsumura, Chief Marketing Officer of Gradle Inc., will discuss which tools to use in a developer stack, how to provision the toolchain to minimize onboa...
With an estimated 50 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2020, several industries will begin to expand their capabilities for retaining end point data at the edge to better utilize the range of data types and sheer volume of M2M data generated by the Internet of Things. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Don DeLoach, CEO and President of Infobright, will discuss the infrastructures businesses will need to implement to handle this explosion of data by providing specific use cases for filte...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Pythian, a global IT services company specializing in helping companies adopt disruptive technologies to optimize revenue-generating systems, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Founded in 1997, Pythian is a global IT services company that helps companies compete by adopting disruptive technologies such as cloud, Big Data, advanced analytics, and DevO...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Avere Systems, a leading provider of enterprise storage for the hybrid cloud, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Avere delivers a more modern architectural approach to storage that doesn’t require the overprovisioning of storage capacity to achieve performance, overspending on expensive storage media for inactive data or the overbuilding of data centers ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Commvault, a global leader in enterprise data protection and information management, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Commvault is a leading provider of data protection and information management...
The Quantified Economy represents the total global addressable market (TAM) for IoT that, according to a recent IDC report, will grow to an unprecedented $1.3 trillion by 2019. With this the third wave of the Internet-global proliferation of connected devices, appliances and sensors is poised to take off in 2016. In his session at @ThingsExpo, David McLauchlan, CEO and co-founder of Buddy Platform, will discuss how the ability to access and analyze the massive volume of streaming data from mil...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Alert Logic, Inc., the leading provider of Security-as-a-Service solutions for the cloud, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Alert Logic, Inc., provides Security-as-a-Service for on-premises, cloud, and hybrid infrastructures, delivering deep security insight and continuous protection for customers at a lower cost than traditional security solutions. Ful...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 ad...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Men & Mice, the leading global provider of DNS, DHCP and IP address management overlay solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. The Men & Mice Suite overlay solution is already known for its powerful application in heterogeneous operating environments, enabling enterprises to scale without fuss. Building on a solid range of diverse platform support,...
Fortunately, meaningful and tangible business cases for IoT are plentiful in a broad array of industries and vertical markets. These range from simple warranty cost reduction for capital intensive assets, to minimizing downtime for vital business tools, to creating feedback loops improving product design, to improving and enhancing enterprise customer experiences. All of these business cases, which will be briefly explored in this session, hinge on cost effectively extracting relevant data from ...
WebSocket is effectively a persistent and fat pipe that is compatible with a standard web infrastructure; a "TCP for the Web." If you think of WebSocket in this light, there are other more hugely interesting applications of WebSocket than just simply sending data to a browser. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Frank Greco, Director of Technology for Kaazing Corporation, will compare other modern web connectivity methods such as HTTP/2, HTTP Streaming, Server-Sent Events and new W3C event APIs ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that iDevices®, the preeminent brand in the connected home industry, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. iDevices, the preeminent brand in the connected home industry, has a growing line of HomeKit-enabled products available at the largest retailers worldwide. Through the “Designed with iDevices” co-development program and its custom-built IoT Cloud Infrastruc...
Companies can harness IoT and predictive analytics to sustain business continuity; predict and manage site performance during emergencies; minimize expensive reactive maintenance; and forecast equipment and maintenance budgets and expenditures. Providing cost-effective, uninterrupted service is challenging, particularly for organizations with geographically dispersed operations.
There will be new vendors providing applications, middleware, and connected devices to support the thriving IoT ecosystem. This essentially means that electronic device manufacturers will also be in the software business. Many will be new to building embedded software or robust software. This creates an increased importance on software quality, particularly within the Industrial Internet of Things where business-critical applications are becoming dependent on products controlled by software. Qua...
Join us at Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo 2016 – June 7-9 at the Javits Center in New York City and November 1-3 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA – and deliver your unique message in a way that is striking and unforgettable by taking advantage of SYS-CON's unmatched high-impact, result-driven event / media packages.
As enterprises work to take advantage of Big Data technologies, they frequently become distracted by product-level decisions. In most new Big Data builds this approach is completely counter-productive: it presupposes tools that may not be a fit for development teams, forces IT to take on the burden of evaluating and maintaining unfamiliar technology, and represents a major up-front expense. In his session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Andrew Warfield, CTO and Co-Founder of Coho Data, will dis...
Silver Spring Networks, Inc. (NYSE: SSNI) extended its Internet of Things technology platform with performance enhancements to Gen5 – its fifth generation critical infrastructure networking platform. Already delivering nearly 23 million devices on five continents as one of the leading networking providers in the market, Silver Spring announced it is doubling the maximum speed of its Gen5 network to up to 2.4 Mbps, increasing computational performance by 10x, supporting simultaneous mesh communic...
Eighty percent of a data scientist’s time is spent gathering and cleaning up data, and 80% of all data is unstructured and almost never analyzed. Cognitive computing, in combination with Big Data, is changing the equation by creating data reservoirs and using natural language processing to enable analysis of unstructured data sources. This is impacting every aspect of the analytics profession from how data is mined (and by whom) to how it is delivered. This is not some futuristic vision: it's ha...