Today In APIs: Facebook SDK 3.0 for iOS, AWS powers NASA Content, API Job Specializations and 17 New APIs

Romin Irani, August 8th, 2012

Amazon EC2New Facebook iOS SDK provides native UI controls. AWS powers Curiosity Rover landing video telecast. API Job requirements get specific. Plus: a report on Business value of APIs, LinkedIn unloads upgraded API to expand sharing power and 17 New APIs.

Facebook iOS 3.0 SDK out of Beta

FacebookThe Facebook iOS 3.0 SDK has been officially released. Some of the new features include ready-to-use native UI controls, improved support for calling Facebook APIs and more. A key feature in this release is the availability of drop-in UI components for common Facebook functionality like Login, Friend Picker and Place Picker. The SDK will continue to have two versions, the master one which was released and a beta version that will address iOS 6 integration.

Curiosity – The AWS and NASA Partnership

Did you watch the Curiosity rover land on Mars? The video was delivered via a system that NASA to serve web content and streaming video to a worldwide audience. It was powered by a number of AWS Services, some of which included EC2, CloudFront, S3 and SimpleDB. AWS is also being used to automate and accelerate the analysis of the images that Curiosity is sending each day. Read the full AWS NASA success story.

API Jobs getting more specialized

First came the APIs, then the API Jobs. And now we are beginning to see API Jobs with very specific requirements. A new job posting at Virtual Instruments is titled “Software Quality Engineer – API” and requires that the candidate work on API test development and involves writing/executing tests that verify the functionally of both the client/server software suite as well as the integration with the hardware and software probes. We are not surprised with this development since APIs are a critical piece of any product portfolio.

API News You Shouldn’t Miss

17 New APIs

Today we had 17 new APIs added to our API directory including a pay-per-call tracking for affiliate networks, a social deal marketing platform, a cloud based push service, a shopping deal aggregator service, an app monetization platform with parental engagement and a gasoline price information service. Below is more details on each of these new APIs.

CallPixelsCallPixels API: CallPixels is a service that lets users add phone numbers and call tracking to their existing affiliate offers. The numbers automatically screen callers and forward them to a customer's inbound call center. The API allows developers to integrate CallPixels to add pay-per-call tracking to their existing affiliate management software. The API uses RESTful calls and responses are formatted in JSON.

DealicioDealicio API: Dealicio is a platform for advertising unique deals for brands. Flash sales, daily deals, and local offers can be advertising conveniently through the Dealicio platform. Brands simply need to register to begin setting up targeted social media marketing campaigns. Dealicio also allows brands to integrate its functionalities into their existing services and webpages. The Dealicio API exposes the customization functionality. It is only available to users with Dealicio accounts.

EventSocketsEventSockets API: EventSockets is a cloud based push service that lets developers use HTML5 WebSockets to create real-time apps for both web and mobile. Users are given the option of public, private and presence channels. The API is used to trigger events. It uses RESTful calls and responses are formatted in JSON.

I Need a BargainI Need a Bargain API: I Need a Bargain (INAB) aggregates shopping deals from numerous bargain sources. With the INAB API, developers can add deals to their own websites. The API provides methods such as getting bargain offers by keyword search, category ID, promo type ID, store ID and more. The API uses RESTful protocol and responses are formatted in JSON.

Media Chaperone Media Chaperone API: Media Chaperone provides parental engagement services for digital content developers. Brands can integrate the Media Chaperone platform with their digital content that allows parents to know what their children are doing with their apps and when. This includes reporting and analysis of use, notifications of children’s activity, ecommerce spending allowance, and more. These elements can be custom-integrated between the brand’s digital content and a mobile or social media platform. The Media Chaperone API exposes the integration functionality. To access the API developers must register with Media Chaperone.

MyGasFeedMyGasFeed API: The service provides frequently updated reports of automotive fuel prices (gasoline in three grades and diesel) for specified locations or regions. It also provides locations of gas stations near a specified location along with background information about the stations, if desired. Applications can also update the service's pricing data for a particular station. Location information supports mapping protocols.

API methods support requesting fuel price information for a specified location or area. Methods also support retrieving a list of stations and details about an individual station. The API also supports updating the service's information with new pricing for an existing station or addition of a new station to the database.

NetWalletNetWallet API: NetWallet provides secure services for online financial transactions. Online merchants use the NetWallet to create simpler checkout procedures for returning customers. When the customers go to a checkout page, the NetWallet widget appears with their credit card information. They will verify their identity through their Facebook account, and complete the purchase with a single click. The customer’s credit card information is secured in NetWallet’s PCI compliant data vault. The API exposes the connection between the NetWallet widget and the datavault.

ParsecoParseco API: Parseco is a developer platform for mobile technology that lets developers use an API to build mobile cloud applications. The RESTful APIs and libraries available can be used to give applications the ability to send and receive SMS messages. Other functionality includes pushing and receiving delivery reports, sending and HLR and receiving an SMS. Libraries are included for C#, PHP, Python and Ruby.

PayBy.MePayBy.Me API: PayBy.Me is a mobile payments platform. Businesses can set up plans that allow their customers to pay by mobile or home telephone. There is no need for customers to register. Developers can integrate PayBe.Me’s payment gateway into apps or allow authorization by SMS. They can also set up customizable recurring billing cycles. The PayBy.Me is accessible to users with accounts only.

PerkvillePerkville API: Perkville helps local businesses create loyalty programs. Businesses can sign up to create point systems for their patrons to accrue credit through a hierarchy of purchase options. Businesses can also award points to customer who refer their friends there. Businesses can chose point schemes and rewards. Patrons just need to check in with their email addresses. The Perkville API exposes perk rule scheme and allows developers to update, change, and access any information in the system. It is a RESTful API that return JSON-encoded data.

PicplumPicplum API: Picplum is a company that specializes in sending high quality photo prints to specified recipients. After creating an account, users can order high quality prints and Picplum will take care of payment, printing and shipping to the designated recipient. The Picplum API allows developers to integrate printing and gifting into their apps and services. Users have access to resources such as user, photos, batches and recipients.

PinknotesPinknotes API: The service provides for secure exchanges of instant messages between users enrolled in the same service-defined network. Online messaging ensures access across locations with web access while maintaining reliable security. Applications can also retrieve currently updated user information, system and user status, etc.

API methods support sending and receiving messages via the service, with ability to define a folder structure for organizing received messages, and management of recipient individuals and groups of users. Methods also support management of user and group calendar entries along with reporting functions about service use within the defined user community.

The Finder Sales TaxThe Finder Sales Tax API: The service from the Ohio Department of Taxation provides applicable sales tax amount to be applied to a purchase subject to tax according to state law. It generates all relevant tax percentages according to either the zip code or the exact address specified by the application that makes the service call.

API methods support submission of a correctly formatted address within Ohio or a U.S. Postal Service ZIP code along with the price subject to tax and the purchase data. Returned data include the amount of sales tax payable to the state government for the specified sale.

TweetBonerTweetBoner API: The service provides a list of the users followed by a Twitter user based on the number of tweets from that source marked as favorites. The preferred users are ranked in order by number of tweets favorited, giving a list in sequence by preference.

API methods support submission of a Twitter username with optional designation of desired output format. Methods return a listing of users preferred for that account. Default formatting in HTML shows each preferred username and account photo plus a count of tweets from that user marked as favorites by the username specified in the request. Various error messages are possible, depending on conditions of the requested username.

TwitchTVTwitchTV API: TwitchTV is a video game broadcasting and chat community featuring gaming personalities, players, tournaments, leagues, and commentary. The TwitchTV API, composed of a REST API and a Javascript SDK, provides access to TwitchTV data, including user, channel, and team information.

U.K National Grid Energy FlowU.K National Grid Energy Flow API: The service provides updated and time-stamped reports of electricity and natural gas usage across its service areas in the United Kingdom and the northeastern United States. It updates usage data every 12 minutes to generate a report of energy demand and the provider's environmental performance.

API methods support retrieval of energy flow data along with the timestamp of the most recent update. Data are provided in compressed format.

WorkflowgenWorkflowgen API: The service provides access to task sequence and status data to allow reporting on process management activities defined in the system from within third-party applications. It reports on activities and users assigned for task sequences previously defined within a separate workflow mapping tool. The RSS data allow for aggregation of inputs across a work process to allow performance monitoring and trigger corrective interventions.

API methods support listing of processes defined and activities specified as part of process completion. Methods include reporting on activity status, completion, and workers assigned for a specific instance of the process map currently underway. The API also gives access to comments documented during process activities to alert management to any issues encountered.

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