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Archive for February, 2010

APIs or OpenAPIs are tiny software utilities or applictions that help in data exchange between websites, applications and organizations, while the data source remains at one place.  These can be used by the developers of websites to combine and display data from more than one sources. A good example of it is World Bank API, where in one can extract data from 114 indicators from key data sources and 12,000 development photos. Google is making use of this kind of APIs to display data along with the graphs for specific queries. Another most widely used API is Google Maps API.

There is a ample scope for libraries to make use of some of the available open APIs to enrich their websites with  new content and give a different kind of web experience for the library users. Roy Tennant, a library expert has listed out some of the library related APIs on his blog posting, which library developers may find useful. Some of the listed APIs include Amazon, Library Thing, Open Library, OCLC, Worldcat, XISBN etc.  Implementation APIs requires a little programming, which I am sure library developers  will be able to undertake to enhance the quality of their library website, portals, OPACs etc.

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