Wednesday, April 6, 2011
Work 2. 0 Hackday SF, a photo from 3/20/2011 by delynsimons Ben Kepes recently wrote an interesting blog post on The Flip Side of an API Economy that inspired a great discussion about the relationship between API providers and API consumers. This tension between developers consuming APIs and building applications (and in many cases businesses) around open platforms predates the dotcom boom of 1995.
Posted by Kin Lane at 8:16 PM
Are you an undergraduate or graduate student who is interested in protecting civil liberties online and fighting for a free and open Internet? Do you have strong writing and research skills? Do you love delving into the latest issues in technology, privacy, intellectual property, and transparency? Apply for EFF's Summer Activism Internship!
The biggest value that WattzOn is offering through its WattzOn API is access to its "Embodied Energy Database" (EED). This database seeks to detail the amount of energy required to manufacture, transport, use, and dispose of all our stuff. The idea is that if we knew the embodied energy in all the items we use, we could make better consumption choices, avoiding those items with unexpectedly high embodied energy. The WattzOn API is Restful and returns data in JSON format.
One of the biggest issues API providers confront when opening data and services is how to provide onboarding, resources, tools and support to their developers - the "front end" of their platforms. As companies realize that developer experience is a competitive differentiator, APIs are products and developers are the customer, there is an increasing need for solutions that let developers get up and running easily and start building apps faster.
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
The Independent Online Distribution Alliance (IODA) has just announced its IODA Open API, currently in beta. The API offers many of the typical resources that you would expect from a music metadata service, with a few extra goodies like these album attributes: UPC code and primary label. Comparing album API results between IODA Open and iTunes, IODA is packing a lot more information into the response.
Posted by Kin Lane at 6:16 PM
Internet certification authorities (CAs) are charged with the task of vouching for the identities of secure web servers. When you browse to https://www. wellsfargo. com/, your browser knows it's the real wellsfargo. com because VeriSign, a CA, says it is. However, if CAs don't validate the identities of the sites they vouch for, the whole system breaks down. In this post, I'll discuss one way in which CAs frequently fail.
I am delighted to report that ICANN has engaged the Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) of Pittsburgh, PA, USA, CyLab to conduct a set of Whois Misuse Studies. Working under the direction of principal investigator Dr. Nicolas Christin, this highly regarded cybercrime lab expects to spend approximately one year analyzing the extent, nature, and impact of harmful actions taken using Whois contact information.
Posted by Kin Lane at 2:56 PM
The number of "as a Service" types continues to grow and we are even seeing services that help you build your own service. PublishMyData falls into this category as it offers Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) which enables you to offer your Data as a Service (DaaS). The company's focus is to help those with data share it in a standard format and in an accessible way.
Flight price tracker Yapta's value proposition sounds a bit like Robin Hood of the travel industry. It will not only track travel prices for you, but to help you get a refund should the price of your reservation fall after you've booked it. I wouldn't be surprised if Yapta can also be used to retrieve kittens from high branches, but that part of the Yapta API isn't documented yet. Yapta relies on JSON schema definitions and provides a detailed encyclopedia of its API messages.
The Federal Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington, D. C. heard oral argument yesterday in the closely watched "breast cancer gene" patent case. At issue are two patents covering naturally occurring human genes that, when present, signal an increased likelihood of developing breast cancer.
Posted by Kin Lane at 11:56 AM
San Francisco - Activists in the urban homesteading movement petitioned today to cancel the registration of bogus trademarks for the terms "urban homesteading" and "urban homestead" -- trademarks that have been used to threaten other urban homesteaders and remove online content and discussion.
Monday, April 4, 2011
Programmer Adam Green can already see the impact of Twitter on the 2012 U. S. presidential primaries and general election. "Having an active base on Twitter may not be a requirement for success," Green said, "But it will be a huge advantage to anyone who does. " Using the Twitter API, Green collaborated with his son, Zachary, to create a site to visualize tweets, mentions and retweets of potential candidates.
San Francisco - The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) urged the Oregon Supreme Court to block warrantless searches of arrestees' cell phones Friday, arguing in an amicus brief that granting law enforcement free rein to search Data on the devices violates basic privacy protections guaranteed by the Constitution. Other state supreme courts have considered the issue, but they have split in their rulings. In this case, a criminal suspect was arrested and placed in a holding cell.
Sunday, April 3, 2011
This week we had 20 new APIs added to our API directory including a task management service, tag cloud creation service, hotel and travel news search service, URL shortening service and a fitness tracking tool. For that last one, we looked closer in The FitBit Gets a Personal Fitness API. Below is more detail on each of these new APIs. Delcampe API: Delcampe. net is an international auction website. Among the services Delcampe offers, is a SOAP based API.
Saturday, April 2, 2011
ICANN signed an agreement yesterday with ICM for the introduction of the. XXX top-level domain. ICANN's Board of Directors approved entering into the agreement during our recent Silicon Valley-San Francisco Public Meeting. We have now finalized negotiations and executed an agreement that's posted at http://www. icann. org/en/tlds/agreements/xxx/. It includes some new and revised provisions that follow on from the agreement that we last posted for public comment in August 2010.
Posted by Kin Lane at 1:56 PM
This past week 19 new mashups were added to our mashup directory and 35 different APIs were used to build them. Some of the newer or less frequently seen APIs include Amazon Elastic MapReduce, Cohuman, Enthusem, GamesRadar, Kynetx, Layar, RealtyBaron Answers, TripIt, Twick. it and Vast. The most often used APIs this week are Google Maps, Oodle and Twitter. And the most commonly used types of APIs were Internet (5 APIs, 5 mashups), Search (4 APIs, 4 mashups) and Social (4 APIs, 10 mashups).
Friday, April 1, 2011
Sad news came out this week that Data. gov and several other open data-focused websites will be taken down due to government cuts. We've been huge fans of the work Data. gov has done so are saddened to see this news. However, there is a campaign underway to save these sites - helped by non-profit Sunlight Labs. Go the the Save the Data site to find out how to help. http://sunlightfoundation.
Posted by Kin Lane at 4:16 PM
Data 2. 0 is a conference about information accessibility and how open data can solve problems in business, social and government. Coming next week from San Francisco, the conference will see companies like InfoChimps, Factual and FluidInfo (who all have APIs) coming together to explore the continued opening of data. Yet, the conference is also perfectly timed to discuss the recent news that some U. S. open data initiatives may not survive the month.
There is no shortage of great tools out there to help you get in shape and keep track of your progress. You may be familiar with Nike's Nike+ system, that is heavily integrated with the iOS platform. It offers a great deal of data, but if you're like me, it wasn't enough to really rave about. Helpful, yes. Impressive, potentially. But FitBit, with its new FitBit API, has the potential to be much more.
"If the minimum wasn't good enough, it wouldn't be the minimum. " - Keith W. Wise words from one of my developers many years ago. Maybe it doesn't fit our over-achiever, type-A mentality very well, but when it comes to tackling a large scale process project like PCI Compliance, it is advice well worth taking. Organizations large and small are increasingly aware of the importance of protecting their customer information and in particular credit card information.