Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) are ubiquitous. Facebook, Twitter, Github or Google Maps are only the better known of many social or GeoGIS platforms out there that expose their data through well-documented public APIs. These allow developers to stand on the shoulders of giants, using and re-using copious amounts of existing data in their own applications or as data-providers for add-ons.
We can help you design and implement APIs to your databases, adapt your data into formats required for import into third party applications or develop tools and interfaces to let the various tools that you use in your daily work talk to each other and thus make sure you get most out of them.
Your applications – and thus your company or institution – can greatly profit from implementing and offering an API to other applications and services in or outside you company. Or inversely, from supplying your data to existing endpoints, such as agendas, news-aggregators, etc. Offering APIs to the public allows the developer community to integrate your data into their own tools or popular platforms such as Facebook or Pinterest. Getting your data out there on the most trending websites through multiple channels means being close to an active user-group, demonstrating engagement and in the end, attracting new potential customers.
APIs allow to loosely couple applications that otherwise would have be tightly integrated and require time-consuming and costly upgrades whenever one of the application’s features becomes out of date, insufficient or the respective vendor decides to drop support for it. A well designed interface allows individual aspects of a software system to evolve independently of one another, as long as the interface is respected. While the upgrade of a complex application might be impossible under current conditions, your budget might often be flexible enough to shoulder iterative upgrades of some of the system’s aspects.
Open Data is trending. An increasing number of companies and governments allow public access to parts of their datasets, be it public transportation schedules, parking spot availability, or population data. Mapping services offer access to their Geographic Information Systems (GIS), political bodies, such as your local council or parliament - to their minutes, decisions and budgets, local directories to their indexes… This allows new and innovative applications, giving deeper insights and strengthening the democratic process.
The Plurioparser project is one example of a system that builds on APIs instead of tightly integrating functionality with existing systems. This enables us to quickly adapt it to various data-sources, from the Semantic Mediawiki Api all the way to a Microsoft™ SQLServer.
Most of the business applications we at TenTwentyFour1024 are developing for our customers make heavy use of geographic information systems, be it to encode addresses to geographic coordinates, reverse encode coordinates to addresses, e.g. for deliveries, or even display routing information and retrieve the transit times to go from one place to another. We mostly rely on services like the Open Source Routing Machine (OSRM) or local GIS APIs, but have also partnered with suppliers like Daimler to make their data and services available to our customers.