Good API designs

Michi Henning of ZeroC writes, in the ACM Queue, about the importance of good APIs.

If you are a developer, I am sure you have developed APIs, or used APIs. Michi focuses on what is traditionally understood as APIs that are provided by libraries and modules for languages such as C, C++, C#, Java, etc.

But there are also APIs presented by web services, those should really be mentioned as they are getting more and more important.

While I was at Feedster, we were (rightly) criticized for having a too complex URL structure for specifying searches which got back RSS. A lot of work was put into creating a much simpler URL to run searches. The litmus test was being able to specify a search in the address bar without having to look up the syntax, and I think we got pretty close to it, if not there.


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