Application Programming Interface (API)

APIs are a series of rules in computer programming, which allow an application to extract information from a service and use it either in their own application or in data analyses.

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APIs are a series of rules in computer programming, which allow an application to extract information from a service and use it either in their own application or in data analyses.

It's kind of like a phone for applications to have conversations: an API "calls" one application and gets information to bring to you to use in your software. APIs facilitate the data needed to provide solutions to customer problems.

Consider this: When you go to a foreign country and don’t know the language, an interpreter is helpful to communicate with someone else. An API acts as an interpreter between applications.

APIs are essentially the face of the application you are trying to use. For instance, if you are trying to purchase something from Amazon, you would enter the product name in the search bar. At that point, the API would pull up all of the matches for the item.

The use of an API provides enhanced security, since the servers aren’t getting full access to each other. Only the necessary information is shared.

They’re also useful tools for programmers. Without an API, a programmer will have to build and rebuild his code every time he wants to do something. They make repetitive tasks less of a burden. JSON and XML are the most common formats for APIs, and nearly all programming languages can analyze these two formats.

Last updated: 2021/08/04