Whether you use a schema designer or are a manual programmer, it pays to know which are the most popular types of APIs out there. It goes without saying that there are hundreds, if not thousands of APIs in the wild. It is estimated that there are 14,000 public APIs, which are provided by dozens of companies, some by big names, like IBM. Though, many software developers love to experiment with new APIs, it often means that there is a learning curve associated with it. Having a shortlist of useful APIs can mean that, you can implement the functionality needed without having to conduct extensive research. In this article, we present four of the most important APIs that all developers should learn to address.
Watson’s Artificial Intelligence API
Designed by IBM Watson’s claim to fame amongst other feats of intelligence, was its ability to beat Jeopardy champions. IBM packaged that AI functionality into an API open to developers. Known as Natural Language Processing or NLP, it helps developers access functions directly, through using RESTful calls. The functionality was further extended when AlchemyAPI was acquisitioned to include visual identification.
Some of the tools available to developers are the AI’s ability to link data patterns and identify words in a piece of text. Additionally, it can be used for picture identification. It is a must use API for any developer who wants to add a dash of intelligence to their app.
The S3 API by Amazon
An app can grow fast and once it is past prototyping, it needs a great deal of storage and that’s where the S3 API can be helpful. It, unlike regular cloud storage, isn’t hard to get and you’ll not be billed hundreds of dollars in mere months of the app taking off.
If you are looking for a system that can be scaled reliably, then, it needs to use object storage like the one provided by Amazon S3. You’ll have access to many features, like uploading directly to bucket storage, plus, you get the option to add version numbers, as well as replication. All of these features are available, via the S3 API, so knowing how to implement this API can solve storage issues.
The Always Useful MailChimp API
Most businesses that don’t have a large team, may find it challenging to send multiple emails. So, marketing an application or perhaps, even, some other company can be a challenge. The good news is that MailChimp is one service which isn’t just easy to use, but its API is pretty handy too. All web applications can benefit from the MailChimp API, as well as any other development tools.
The Send Grid
Most people know that all emails aren’t equal and so a transactional email is going to be different from a marketing email. Transactional emails have essential information. Information like password resets, social media info, etc.
When you use the SendGrid API, it helps to add email capabilities to developers. Its functionality has expanded dramatically, beyond just real-time delivery of email messages and now uses various marketing features, as well as trigger responses. It is easy to implement the API to send account notifications to members and those who sign up. Perhaps the only competitor is MailChimp’s API called Mandrill. But Mandrill is more complex.
In our experience, the above mentioned APIs are the best, when it comes to communicating and performing, otherwise, CPU intensive tasks. That said, it is up to you to pick and choose what works best for your software application.