About Paul Cray

Machine Learning Specialist at APImetrics.

APIStrat: The API Strategy & Practice Conference 2017 Review

APIstrat was a blast, of course. Portland is like the smaller, quieter little sibling of Seattle. It even has a Pioneer Square and a three-dimensional model of the Washington state metropolis. And the weirdness is hidden away. It would be a good place to live. One thing I hadn't come across before in the API world was mocking. But it was all over the place, albeit at a somewhat subliminal level. "Of course, mocking." It makes sense. An API isn't always going to be there yet when you need to test it, so it makes sense to simulate it. You'd [...]

By | 2017-11-03T04:06:35+00:00 November 3rd, 2017|Opinion|0 Comments

Never Mind the Quality: The Depth and Breadth of API Management

There's an interesting article over at SDTimes called "API management: The glue holding the app economy together." Yep, they're right about that. If we think about what an app actually is, it's basically a bit of a web browser that's specially designed. So, you could access Facebook or Twitter via your browser, or you could use the app. Getting a website to work on different devices with radically different screen sizes and input modes is a PitA. It's much easier to use the iOS or Android SDK and build an app. It'll make a lot of things easier, and [...]

By | 2017-07-12T15:22:43+00:00 July 12th, 2017|Opinion|0 Comments

API Monitoring: Getting The Measure Of It (But Not For The Sake Of Measurement)

In the context of API monitoring, your API management system might generate logs to help you learn about the behavior of your APIs. For instance, you might get an alert if a HTTP error is seen. That might tell you there are problems with the API, but only problems of certain kinds. If won't tell you if there is a problem with what is being returned to the user. This can be a big issue. Some systems will always return a HTTP 200 response code, even if there is a server error. (SOAP API are especially notorious for always [...]

By | 2017-07-12T15:33:14+00:00 July 3rd, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Your API Management System: Using The Wrong Tool Can Be Dangerous, Cost More, And Take Longer

IT is a function of your business, so you need to manage it. And IT is responsible for the APIs that your business increasingly relies on as vital components in mission-critical workflows. Which is to say that you need an API management system. There are lots. Just take a look at the Wikipedia page on API management! There are also a lot of different aspects to API management. One is an API monitoring system. (We can have an interesting discussion about what exactly is meant by API monitoring. See Andrew Slivker's article on Nevatech's blog that I plan on responding [...]

By | 2017-06-22T08:37:13+00:00 June 22nd, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Want To Monitor Internal APIs? It’s As Easy as Raspberry Pi

Making calls to API endpoints from one of our 64 cloud locations on five continents isn't ideal – or even possible – for every API stakeholder. Many APIs are purely internal. No one is going to be calling them from any cloud location on any continent. But your internal APIs are just as mission-critical as any external, third-party API. In fact, internal APIs might well be more important. Monitoring is a vital part of any API management process, although one all too often neglected – especially for internal APIs. But luckily, we have a solution for the issue of monitoring [...]

By | 2017-06-16T08:37:20+00:00 June 16th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

What Are Your APIs Doing Right Now, In The Real World? API Integration And Management

One of the current hot topics in the API world is API integration. That's because more businesses use APIs to glue services together, whether provided by other units in the same organization or by third parties. Then they bolt them onto existing processes as part of mission-critical workflows. It's a bit Rube Goldberg-esque (Heath Robinson-esque to us Brits). Keeping it all working from minute to minute becomes ever more pressing. Take one particular business domain: video content provision. The average video content provider probably consumes APIs from 10-15 third-party services (both free and paid) to support functionality such as ad [...]

By | 2017-06-16T08:37:13+00:00 June 15th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Leavin’ On A Jet Plane (Or Not, If You Tried To Fly British Airways)

Were you hoping to be a passenger on a British Airways flight over the weekend? So were ten of thousands of other travelers. The sheer logistic disruption (planes in the wrong place, getting luggage where it is supposed to be) is taking several days to sort out. And that's not to mention how long it might take to sort the most pressing IT issues. BA has said the problem was caused by a power surge that led to some networking hardware failing, and then the all-important messaging systems failing. But BA was already experiencing significant IT issues on Friday, with [...]

By | 2017-06-07T09:39:14+00:00 June 1st, 2017|Enterprise IT, Opinion, Sectors, Travel|0 Comments

What is a Web API? APImetrics Explains it All

"What is a web API?" At APImetrics, we actually get this question a lot. And I found someone asking this question recently on Quora as well. I answered it there, and I thought it'd be helpful to post it here, too. Happy learning! To understand what a web API is, it’s necessary to understand what makes a HTTP request to an API different from a HTTP request to any old URI (Universal Resource Indicator, which typically might be a webpage). Generally, we might expect that a HTTP server will return HTML. After all, it is the Hypertext Transfer Protocol. But [...]

API Changes: Making Sure Your Calls Work After The Switch

One of the things about APIs is that they're subject to change. API changes might be because the API endpoints and methods have been changed. In this case, a good API provider will give its users plenty of warning about API changes. There will also probably be a grace period as the deprecated and new versions of the API operate side-by-side before the switch. Even if you pay for the API, it's going to be up to you to make sure the third-party API you depend on is going to ensure continuity of service. But it's all too easy to [...]

By | 2017-06-07T09:45:23+00:00 May 23rd, 2017|Enterprise IT, Opinion, Uncategorized|0 Comments

2030 Web Resources: Intelligent Knowledge Bases & Event Horizons?

In 2004, pretty much nobody was worrying about RESTful APIs. But we've seen an exponential increase in interest over the past 13 years. If that interest continues for the next 13 years, 2030 web resources might be very different. We might hit the API Event Horizon! It’s possible that the RESTful paradigm might go the way of SOAP. But HTTP has been around for over a quarter-century now. It's very probable we'll still be using it in 2030. And if we're not, something else will take its place that we'll have to worry about. So it's a good bet that [...]

By | 2017-05-19T03:44:45+00:00 May 22nd, 2017|Opinion|0 Comments