by Spencer Nguyen • August 3, 2022
In the data-driven world, APIs have earned a crucial spot in the space where business and tech collide. Everyone from software engineers to business owners can benefit from APIs. This post will serve as a beginner’s guide on APIs, highlighting how they work and the benefits they can provide to business operations.
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An API, or Application Programming Interface, refers to functions allowing applications to access data and interact with external software components, operating systems, and microservices.
APIs allow multiple applications to talk to one another. An API delivers a user request to a system and then sends the system’s response back to the original user. APIs also allow users to access and build upon the data and functionality of existing applications.
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Now that we’ve got a solid idea of what an API entails, let’s examine how an API works. Various analogies can be used to help better beginners better understand how APIs work. Regardless of the specific analogy, you can always think of an API as a “middleman” between applications and servers. APIs Are Kind of Like a Waiter at a Restaurant
Just like a waiter allows you and the cook to share information without ever having to communicate directly, an API allows multiple applications to send messages back and forth without directly communicating with each other. APIs Can Also Be Thought of as Translators
An API also functions like a translator, allowing you to receive information that you otherwise wouldn’t be able to comprehend without outside intervention. The same is true for an API that allows the application to send messages back and forth so that both applications understand the information thoroughly.
A variety of different APIs are used in the modern world. Two of the most common types of APIs are REST APIs and SOAP APIs.
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APIs come in handy in a variety of situations, allowing various software and applications to communicate, work together, and achieve common goals. Some of the most popular use cases of APIs are database APIs, operating systems APIs, remote APIs, and web APIs.
Overall, APIs have endless use cases, from a web server to web development to web services to database system management and everything in between. Therefore, APIs can be utilized to ensure these entities run more efficiently.
APIs are used across a vast array of industries and bring significant advantages to business operations. Some of the top benefits that APIs can provide to business operations include:
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After reading DreamFactory’s Beginner’s Guide to APIs, you’re ready to discover how implementing APIs can help elevate your company Register today to discover DreamFactory’s new features and to try out the platform for yourself.
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