Environment Canterbury has a click-through screen making you accept their terms and conditions before you get access to the API, and they use that as an opportunity to ask some questions about your intended use. Then once you've answered those you get direct access to the API as beautiful plain XML. (Okay, XML which possibly overuses attributes to carry data instead of tags, but I eventually figured out how to make my server's version of PHP happy with that.) It's glorious. It made me so happy that I went back to their click-through screen to give them some more information about what I was doing.
When I had to try and navigate Twitter's API and authentication models, however... Well, I absolutely understand the need for it, but it'll be a long time before I ever try that again.
From: Code for Libraries [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Edward Summers
Sent: Tuesday, 3 December 2013 6:57 a.m.
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [CODE4LIB] The lie of the API
On Dec 3, 2013, at 4:18 AM, Ross Singer <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> I'm not going to defend API keys, but not all APIs are open or free.
> You need to have *some* way to track usage.
A key (haha) thing that keys also provide is an opportunity to have a conversation with the user of your api: who are they, how could you get in touch with them, what are they doing with the API, what would they like to do with the API, what doesn't work? These questions are difficult to ask if they are just a IP address in your access log.
P Please consider the environment before you print this email.
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