There are some pretty proven API solutions out there these days. I had to explain to someone a call the other day that in 2017 you shouldn’t ever roll your own API signup, registration, rate limiting, reporting, logging, and other API management features–there are too many proven API management solutions on the market these days (cough, 3Scale, Restlet, DreamFactory, or Tyk)
As a penny-pinching small business owner who is also a programmer, I am always struggling with the question of whether I should be buying or building. However, when it comes to some of the more proven, well-laid API sectors–I know better. One of these areas I will never develop my own tooling is when it comes to analytics. There are just too many quality analytics solutions available out there who are API-driven.
One of these is Keen.io, who describe themselves as “APIs for capturing, analyzing, and embedding event data in everything you build,” provided an example of this in action, in their unstoppable API era post:
"One of Keen’s largest customers stealthily uses Keen’s APIs to white label an in-app analytics suite for their Fortune 500 customers. Their delivery manager probably made the point most succinctly: 'It would have taken our team two years to deliver what we’ve done with Keen in nine weeks.'"
As a developer, we like to think we can doing anything on our own, and we often also underestimate the time it will take to accomplish something. I think I’m going to go through the high grade, well-established resources available in my API Stack research, and see which areas I feel contain solid API providers, and I would think twice about reinventing the wheel in.
Something like analytics always seems like it is easy to do at first, but then once you are down the rabbit hole trying to do at scale, and things begin to change. I prefer to not get distracted by the nuts and bolts of things like analytics, and be allowed to focus on what I’m good at. The best part of APIs is that you get to look good doing what you do, but it is something that can also be enhanced and augmented by other experts like Keen.io who are rocking what they do.