APIs are the future with more than 30,000 APIs being listed on ProgrammableWeb. Due to their functionality and practicality, many people are turning to APIs and many businesses are finding out about the API industry and are investing millions into this, trying to be the first ones to own any groundbreaking API that is used everywhere.
Before we go into API directory vs API discovery and also dive into what is API discovery and API directory, we need to understand what an API is.
Table Of Contents
WHAT IS AN API?
API stands for application programming interface and in simple terms, it is a bridge between application software and is there to assist the programmer to communicate between two software and acts as an intermediary. This intermediary allows applications in various tasks such as interacting with various other software components as well as operating systems or other microservices and with the help of this access data.
There are 4 types of APIs
There are three types of API architecture
- REST – Scalable web APIs
- SOAP- Protocol for secure APIs
- RPC- Protocol was written in XML and JSON
Now that we have it out of the way, let us talk about the API directory.
WHAT IS AN API DIRECTORY?
An API directory can be compared to a library wherein you find exciting new APIs to work with. It is a place to find out APIs. Developers use API directories all the time to find out APIs that they can work with and also gather information regarding these APIs. A directory is an excellent tool for someone who is new to APIs and has quite a lot of resource material as well as tutorials for helping these new developers to get into API. API directory is also quite helpful for someone who is not willing to spend top dollar for an API and is looking for a workable alternative. You cannot use the API directly from the directory, you can however get all the information you need end get to know the official provider of that API or the 3rd party provider.
WHAT IS API DISCOVERY?
API discovery is geared towards innovation and furthering the development of API and the key to API discovery is to make the services in such a way that it is accessible to other developers and is discoverable.
API discovery is of two types, one being internal and the other external. In the case of internal APIs, API discovery helps your team find APIs and also makes it easy for them to add new features to the current API. External API is the process wherein others outside your team find out and discover your API. This is one of the key aspects that are important to the life cycle of an API and helps to keep the API relevant allowing its users to start using it.
One of the other terms that we come across when we talk about API is the API marketplace and how it ties together with the API directory as well as API discovery and what are the differences between these.
WHAT IS AN API MARKETPLACE?
An API marketplace is exactly what it sounds like, it is the marketplace where you can find and utilize APIs. A marketplace for APIs is a hub of activity wherein various developers publish their APIs for others to use. The difference between an API directory and an API marketplace is that in the marketplace you can acquire the API and it is the same difference between a library’s book list and a bookstore. While in that library list you are only able to learn about books and also explore various genres of books and learn what kind of books are available, in a bookstore you can purchase that book. The same goes for the API marketplace wherein you can keep track of various APIs to know their pricing as well as a lot more data regarding their popularity and other key factors.
You Might Also Like,
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN API DISCOVERY, API DIRECTORY, AND API MARKETPLACE?
The main difference between API discovery API directory and API marketplace is that in order for API discovery to happen the developers need to find out about that API in any API directory or API marketplace. The primary difference between an API directory and an API marketplace is that in an API directory the APIs can only be found and in a marketplace, they can be subscribed to, the API network found, the API documentation known, the API specifications known, and tested, the API workflow tested and used by the developers.
HERE ARE THE TOP API MARKETPLACES
- Envato API – It is one of the fastest rising API marketplaces and you guessed it right, it is by Envato which is also popular for providing stock creative materials. In this marketplace, you can access various data like sales data and find out about various features.
- Zapier – It is one of the most popular API marketplaces wherein you can work efficiently and build custom workflows without writing repetitive tasks and without using code. You can also automate everything in the web application.
- Intercom – The best thing about this marketplace is that it is code-free and is based on a visual approach wherein you can automate your workflow with a visual builder and this allows you to create various integrations with the help of built-in applications and tools in a way that you have never done.
- Azure App Service – With the capability of running dedicated in isolated app service environments Azure app service allows you to scale APIs in the language of your choice and deploy them.
- Google Cloud APIs- Perhaps one of the most popular API marketplaces to ever exist Google cloud APIs allow you to automate your workflows and manage API using the language of your choice.
So, this was the blog about API discovery vs API directory and how the API marketplace ties into the whole thing. All of these 3 are equally important to the future of API and to the future of integrating services that go well with the theme of global connectivity. APIs are getting incredibly efficient and powerful as we speak and, on their path, to being more important than ever in the future.
If you are someone who is still having doubts about APIs but knows vaguely the importance of APIs and wants to implement them then you are in the right place because we at ThinkToShare are the fastest growing website development company in Kolkata. We will make sure that you do not have to go through learning the history of API and everything about API in order to utilize API properly in your business.