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Where does the cloud and SOA come in to play when building an API?

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Enterprise architects building an API may find their work under increased scrutiny because the application landscape is evolving. With more work and data flowing through systems, building an API with SOA and the cloud in mind may play an important role in successful development.

In this Ask the Expert column, Shawn Rogers, vice president of Enterprise Management Associates, highlights that developers have to be open-minded when building an API as to just what they can and cannot do. "Developers are like shops, and they tend to like to make everything from scratch, which is not always the best way to go from a business standpoint," he said.

Read more here: Building an API with the cloud and SOA in mind

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Have you learned anything valuable from building an API?
I'd like to turn this question on its head a little.  I've discovered that by writing code to interact with the APIs, especially with 'tests' that I've learned a lot about the capabilities, and the lacking of feature richness in my APIs.  I'd suggest that building a black box API test structure, and also by surveying potential consumers of your API, you can learn a lot about what your API provides that is truly valued, and also to learn what areas you're greatest API features are not quite as great as you once thought.
We had a colleague that wrote some code to help people learn how to use REST-based APIs - https://github.com/djannot/web-automation-center. Nice way for beginners to learn how to interact with some of the commonly used APIs.
Veretax, I like your suggestion about building a black box API test structure!