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18 Sep 2018
API stands for Application Programming Interface.
If you are looking for its definition on Google or Wikipedia, here is the definition that is provided. “A set of functions or procedures that allows the creation of application which accept the features or date of an operating system, application or other services.”
Very confused, isn’t it. went right above your head? Perhaps, you are not the only one. If you didn’t understand anything after going through it? don’t worry! Most people around you also don’t.
The definition in itself is cent percent true and do not need any modifications. You will say the exact same words after going through this article.
There is a problem in our Computer society that is prevailing from many years and looks set to prevail for the years to come. We give zero F’s whether the user actually understand the definition or not. we just give our definition and the job is done. We will not review it. we will not try to understand the user’s point of view. You can read the entire definition on Wikipedia, while understanding nothing.
People who are already working on Application Programming Interface. will say,” Hey, that’s a perfect definition”. The best part is that the persons who are already using it will definitely know what it means. The definition is not meant for them. It must be defined in a way to target the audiences who don’t anything about it. In this, we will focus on such audiences.
How Application Programming Interface. Works?
Application Programming Interface. is something that will always help you to have a seamless connectivity to the world around. It can be taught better with the help of few examples.
If you ever try to book flight tickets from the internet. Like you are going to board the plane at Varanasi and want to go to New Delhi. Suppose you want to book an Indigo Airlines flight ticket. How many times have you actually booked a ticket from the official website of Airlines. We just enter certain details like from, to place and the date of travelling on the sites of travel agency websites like goibobo.com and makemytrip.com. You will get a well-researched piece of information like the no. of flights available, their timings, seat availability and the fare of each airline.
We book the ticket of Indigo airline from these travel agency websites. Do you know how it is done while you are actually not even visiting their official sites and a third-party operator is doing the entire job for you?
Application Programming Interface.
Making the process even simpler in the process?
All this is done with the help of API. Application Programming Interface helps you to book a seat in the exact same flight which you can book from the official site also. Application Programming Interface is making connectivity to reach to every corner of the world.
Another example is that of a Google login system. Suppose you are designing your own website. And you have a separate system to allow the user to login to your website. It will ask for the basic details from the user like his/her name, gender, email address, contact number, etc. And you will send a verification code to his Email address or Contact no. to verify whether his account is not biased in any way.
But, here you can play smart. Incorporate a way to sign up to your website with the help of Google. Google has already done what you are asking before login. Why not use the Google login system and save on the time of writing so much code? Google has already done the verification part. In the recent times, nearly all the websites use the Google or Facebook log in system to sign up to your account. All this is possible because of an easy process which is known by the name of Application Programming Interface.
Application Programming Interface key is an important topic which is be used before using the process of connectivity across various devices. Suppose that you are an owner of a website and you want to use the Google login system to help the users sign up on your website. You will ask Google,” Can I use your code”. It will reply,” of course man” and it will provide you with an API key. With the help of this, it can have a check on your activities and avoid its misuse by your hands.
Application Programming Interface is a code written by someone else which you can use to the best of your benefits. You do not need to take about any details that how was it written? Under what circumstances was it designed? Simply, it was someone else’s code and you have got a legal permission to use the code.
Like if you are going to develop a weather forecasting app, you don’t need to send a satellite to observe the climatic conditions. You are not Tony Stark! You just make the use of someone else’s satellite with the help of API.
Application Programming Interface is the engine behind the hood and the reason behind the connectivity that we often rely upon blindly.
Suppose you are at a restaurant. Sitting on a table with the menu card in your hand. You select the dishes you want and the waiter will go with this information to the kitchen where it will be prepared. When the order is ready, the waiter returns back with the order and serves it up to you. Here, the system consists of you and the kitchen, where the waiter is providing you with all the facilities that you require. Broadening this example to everyday life. Application Programming Interface does the job of the waiter, making everything available to you at your fingertips.
You must have been using the Google Maps to access your location in your day-to-day life. If you select the ride option between any two entered places. There is an Uber icon. This is possible simply by the use of API making connectivity easier than ever.
You must be lying if you say that you have never installed Tinder on your smartphone. Everyone does it but only some actually do admit it. Tinder uses the Facebook log in system and gets access of your name, gender, age and mutual friends. This means that you don’t have to enter these details again on tinder. This is made possible by API.
You must have visited many e-commerce websites which say that they sell commodities at a low cost because they cut on the prices of middle men. In computer programming, these middle things have a great importance as they are successful in bringing out the best from the internet through connectivity.
Now, it’s the perfect time. Read the definition again. Makes sense, right? ?