Application Programming Interface

The term application programming interface (API) comes from computer programming. It is an interface between software and an external application or service to enable the exchange of information between them in a simplified way. The API is a set of protocols that the company providing the data defines and regulates so others can properly use its data or service. This entry discusses how APIs are used, the kinds of services they enable, and concerns that arise from the use of APIs for data mining on social networks.

The availability of APIs has enabled the enrichment of the user experiences online, on mobile apps, and elsewhere on digital devices. Let us consider a simple example: A small bakery wants to embed a searchable map to its shop ...

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