APIs and Their Relevance to Modern Enterprises
Modern enterprises increasingly expose their services as APIs for better reusability and faster innovation. This causes APIs to live at the heart of many systems and has led to widespread API adoption. APIs enable organizations to compose their capabilities as reusable units. These units can then be delivered independently and help organizations to rapidly increase their innovation cycles. This is somewhat similar to how automobiles are developed by using a large number of parts that are independently manufactured. These parts are then brought together to form different car models. For example, we see the same engine type being used in different models from the same manufacturer. This has helped the automotive marques, and the industry as a whole, to innovate rapidly. Car manufacturers are adroit at coming up with newer models while efficiently maintaining the older ones. This is made possible by independent and reusable units.
The Strategic Role of APIs for Sustained Growth
Most readers should be familiar with the popular Bezos Mandate. This occurred in 2002 when Jeff Bezos, Amazon's CEO, issued a mandate that required all teams in Amazon to expose their data and functionality through interfaces (APIs). Quoting the first item from his mandate, he said, "All teams will henceforth expose their data and functionality through service interface."
This mandate is most likely responsible for Amazon's highly successful journey so far. The company has built amazing technologies thanks to all their functionality being exposed through APIs, allowing creative individuals to take advantage of what's already been built. In addition to helping engineers build great technology, these APIs have also given Amazon the flexibility to innovate by adapting to market demands. The ability to adapt and innovate is key to an organization's sustained success and growth.
This is a preview of the Open Source API Management Refcard. To read the entire Refcard, please download the PDF from the link above.