Welcome!

Eclipse Authors: Carmen Gonzalez, Lori MacVittie, Mark R. Hinkle, Natalie Lerner, Roger Strukhoff

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
SYS-CON Events announced today that SOA Software, an API management leader, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. SOA Software is a leading provider of API Management and SOA Governance products that equip business to deliver APIs and SOA together to drive their company to meet its business strategy quickly and effectively. SOA Software’s technology helps businesses to accelerate their digital channels with APIs, drive partner adoption, monetize their assets, and achieve a...
From a software development perspective IoT is about programming "things," about connecting them with each other or integrating them with existing applications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Yakov Fain, co-founder of Farata Systems and SuranceBay, will show you how small IoT-enabled devices from multiple manufacturers can be integrated into the workflow of an enterprise application. This is a practical demo of building a framework and components in HTML/Java/Mobile technologies to serve as a platform that can integrate new devices as they become available on the market.
BSQUARE is a global leader of embedded software solutions. We enable smart connected systems at the device level and beyond that millions use every day and provide actionable data solutions for the growing Internet of Things (IoT) market. We empower our world-class customers with our products, services and solutions to achieve innovation and success. For more information, visit www.bsquare.com.
Almost everyone sees the potential of Internet of Things but how can businesses truly unlock that potential. The key will be in the ability to discover business insight in the midst of an ocean of Big Data generated from billions of embedded devices via Systems of Discover. Businesses will also need to ensure that they can sustain that insight by leveraging the cloud for global reach, scale and elasticity.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Red Hat, the world's leading provider of open source solutions, will exhibit at Internet of @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Red Hat is the world's leading provider of open source software solutions, using a community-powered approach to reliable and high-performing cloud, Linux, middleware, storage and virtualization technologies. Red Hat also offers award-winning support, training, and consulting services. As the connective hub in a global network of enterprises, partners, a...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Utimaco will exhibit at SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Utimaco is a leading manufacturer of hardware based security solutions that provide the root of trust to keep cryptographic keys safe, secure critical digital infrastructures and protect high value data assets. Only Utimaco delivers a general-purpose hardware security module (HSM) as a customizable platform to easily integrate into existing software solutions, embed business logic and build s...
How do APIs and IoT relate? The answer is not as simple as merely adding an API on top of a dumb device, but rather about understanding the architectural patterns for implementing an IoT fabric. There are typically two or three trends: Exposing the device to a management framework Exposing that management framework to a business centric logic • Exposing that business layer and data to end users. This last trend is the IoT stack, which involves a new shift in the separation of what stuff happens, where data lives and where the interface lies. For instance, it’s a mix of architectural style...
Connected devices are changing the way we go about our everyday life, from wearables to driverless cars, to smart grids and entire industries revolutionizing business opportunities through smart objects, capable of two-way communication. But what happens when objects are given an IP-address, and we rely on that connection, sometimes with our lives? How do we secure those vast data infrastructures and safe-keep the privacy of sensitive information? This session will outline how each and every connected device can uphold a core root of trust via a unique cryptographic signature – a “bir...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Matrix.org has been named “Silver Sponsor” of Internet of @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Matrix is an ambitious new open standard for open, distributed, real-time communication over IP. It defines a new approach for interoperable Instant Messaging and VoIP based on pragmatic HTTP APIs and WebRTC, and provides open source reference implementations to showcase and bootstrap the new standard. Our focus is on simplicity, security, and supporting the fullest feature set.
Internet of @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley announced on Thursday its first 12 all-star speakers and sessions for its upcoming event, which will take place November 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in California. @ThingsExpo, the first and largest IoT event in the world, debuted at the Javits Center in New York City in June 10-12, 2014 with over 6,000 delegates attending the conference. Among the first 12 announced world class speakers, IBM will present two highly popular IoT sessions, which will take place November 4-6, 2014 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, Calif...
P2P RTC will impact the landscape of communications, shifting from traditional telephony style communications models to OTT (Over-The-Top) cloud assisted & PaaS (Platform as a Service) communication services. The P2P shift will impact many areas of our lives, from mobile communication, human interactive web services, RTC and telephony infrastructure, user federation, security and privacy implications, business costs, and scalability. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Robin Raymond, Chief Architect at Hookflash Inc., will walk through the shifting landscape of traditional telephone a...
WebRTC defines no default signaling protocol, causing fragmentation between WebRTC silos. SIP and XMPP provide possibilities, but come with considerable complexity and are not designed for use in a web environment. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Matthew Hodgson, technical co-founder of the Matrix.org, will discuss how Matrix is a new non-profit Open Source Project that defines both a new HTTP-based standard for VoIP & IM signaling and provides reference implementations.

SUNNYVALE, Calif., Oct. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Spansion Inc. (NYSE: CODE), a global leader in embedded systems, today added 96 new products to the Spansion® FM4 Family of flexible microcontrollers (MCUs). Based on the ARM® Cortex®-M4F core, the new MCUs boast a 200 MHz operating frequency and support a diverse set of on-chip peripherals for enhanced human machine interfaces (HMIs) and machine-to-machine (M2M) communications. The rich set of periphera...

SYS-CON Events announced today that Aria Systems, the recurring revenue expert, has been named "Bronze Sponsor" of SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Aria Systems helps leading businesses connect their customers with the products and services they love. Industry leaders like Pitney Bowes, Experian, AAA NCNU, VMware, HootSuite and many others choose Aria to power their recurring revenue business and deliver exceptional experiences to their customers.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is going to require a new way of thinking and of developing software for speed, security and innovation. This requires IT leaders to balance business as usual while anticipating for the next market and technology trends. Cloud provides the right IT asset portfolio to help today’s IT leaders manage the old and prepare for the new. Today the cloud conversation is evolving from private and public to hybrid. This session will provide use cases and insights to reinforce the value of the network in helping organizations to maximize their company’s cloud experience.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is making everything it touches smarter – smart devices, smart cars and smart cities. And lucky us, we’re just beginning to reap the benefits as we work toward a networked society. However, this technology-driven innovation is impacting more than just individuals. The IoT has an environmental impact as well, which brings us to the theme of this month’s #IoTuesday Twitter chat. The ability to remove inefficiencies through connected objects is driving change throughout every sector, including waste management. BigBelly Solar, located just outside of Boston, is trans...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Matrix.org has been named “Silver Sponsor” of Internet of @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Matrix is an ambitious new open standard for open, distributed, real-time communication over IP. It defines a new approach for interoperable Instant Messaging and VoIP based on pragmatic HTTP APIs and WebRTC, and provides open source reference implementations to showcase and bootstrap the new standard. Our focus is on simplicity, security, and supporting the fullest feature set.
Predicted by Gartner to add $1.9 trillion to the global economy by 2020, the Internet of Everything (IoE) is based on the idea that devices, systems and services will connect in simple, transparent ways, enabling seamless interactions among devices across brands and sectors. As this vision unfolds, it is clear that no single company can accomplish the level of interoperability required to support the horizontal aspects of the IoE. The AllSeen Alliance, announced in December 2013, was formed with the goal to advance IoE adoption and innovation in the connected home, healthcare, education, aut...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Red Hat, the world's leading provider of open source solutions, will exhibit at Internet of @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Red Hat is the world's leading provider of open source software solutions, using a community-powered approach to reliable and high-performing cloud, Linux, middleware, storage and virtualization technologies. Red Hat also offers award-winning support, training, and consulting services. As the connective hub in a global network of enterprises, partners, a...
The only place to be June 9-11 is Cloud Expo & @ThingsExpo 2015 East at the Javits Center in New York City. Join us there as delegates from all over the world come to listen to and engage with speakers & sponsors from the leading Cloud Computing, IoT & Big Data companies. Cloud Expo & @ThingsExpo are the leading events covering the booming market of Cloud Computing, IoT & Big Data for the enterprise. Speakers from all over the world will be hand-picked for their ability to explore the economic strategies that utility/cloud computing provides. Whether public, private, or in a hybrid form, clo...