Building my own tech
Now Reading
API’s and API responses

API’s and API responses

by KieranJanuary 22, 2015

When you query an API, you’re looking transpose the information within one system into another. As an example, I could use the Netshock API to create a mobile application with the intention of pulling data from the Netshock database into my app, so that I don’t have to re-type all of my articles.

When I do that, I’ll need to create an API key. That key is used as an identifier for the mobile app, which lets the Netshock database know that the app is authorized to access the information. Usually, that API key will be passed into a URL string, which will also include all the variables you’d like to query. This differs between API’s, but, most are well documented and you should be able to find all the information you need.

Often an API response is available in both JSON and XML. Depending how you’re building your app you might have a preference, but, for me, I usually use JSON API calls/responses.

Once you’ve queried an API (as per the instructions set out in the API documentation), you’ll get a response back. Below, I’ve provided a sample response from the Twillio API.

api

As you can see, the response is structured and easy to handle once it reaches your app. This is the sort of API response you should expect from most of the API’s you’ll be using (albeit with different fields). If you can handle the response of one API, you’ll be well prepared to handle most others.

Image used under creative commons

This article was bought to you by Netshock. Netshock aim to provide technology guides and insight to our readers.

What's your reaction?
Love It
0%
Interested
0%
Meh...
0%
What?
0%
Hate It
0%
Sad
0%
About The Author
Kieran

My name is Kieran, I love to see how technology can drive business growth. I started the Netshock technology blog as a place to share my thoughts and experiences with a wider audience. I cover all sorts of topics, from marketing to development.