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APIs

Vithu Mathi
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Vithu Mathi
Front End Web Development Techdegree Student 3,474 Points

Hello TreeHouse Community, I'm having a hard time understand what an API is? Could anyone give me an explanation?

Hello TreeHouse Community, I'm having a hard time understand what an API is? Could anyone give me an explanation?

1 Answer

Steven Parker
Steven Parker
221,070 Points

:mailbox_with_mail: Hi, I got your request.

API stands for "Application Programming Interface". In the most general terms, an API is a set of clearly defined methods of communication between various software components. Essentially, "How software bits talk to each other."

A typical API is often related to some data or service provider and would be used by someone developing an application that uses that service or data. Some examples might be a library book catalog, live weather information, or a database on movies.

Does that clear it up?

Vithu Mathi
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.a{fill-rule:evenodd;}techdegree
Vithu Mathi
Front End Web Development Techdegree Student 3,474 Points

Thank you, Steven, for the prompt reply.

I'm still bit confused, Could you please explain the library book catalog example bit more? in terms of API?

Steven Parker
Steven Parker
221,070 Points

I only meant that as a generic example of a service you might use. The API for such a service would describe how to make requests, such as searching for a specific title or author, and it would also describe how the response would be structured to contain things like publication dates and check-out status.

Some popular real API providers include Facebook, AccuWeather, flickr, and OMDB (Open Movie Database)..