Month: May 2016

APIs: a Human Social Interface

Jay Cousin’s conceptualises Personal APIs as Social APIs. Put simply, a Social API is a means of creating an interface of yourself for organisations and groups. In his blog, his conceived Social API is a list of common responses to selected topics (like a FAQ), detailing his preferences for email length to comfort food. Cousin’s reasons that this presentation was conceived around the idea that humans have an interface problem. “I find this notion of Human as software interesting, I would like to make my own behavioural code open source, which could also make memetic and behavioural replication easier.” The conception of a Social API as open source behavioural code suggests that the aggregation of personal data could assist in social interactions with the individual. In Naveen’s commentary on his own API, he conceives his project as a virtual me. The virtual me is defined by all published quantifiable data publicly available. The aggregation of data from multiple platforms would produce the quantified self. So, if the human is defined as software then the quantified …

APIs for Students

My exploration of the API focusses on its ability to assist in agency for an individual within a system. I’m exploring beyond the grounds of feedback systems, and assessing other forms of potential Edutech platforms. APIs – application program interfaces – provide a programme to access and interact with datasets within another program. APIs let you build, hack and remix current systems. For example, a student has utilised Twitter’s API to post (on their behalf) data pulled from UOW’s Parking API to build a (somewhat satirical) Twitter account that tweets out parking availability amongst social commentary. Or, something more elaborate that integrates data from BOM weather mapping, and Livetrafic feed with UOW parking data. Both of these (Indie edutech) platforms are possible due to the availabilities of APIs. Essentially, connecting two (or more) data sets from separate systems produces more value than either of them could independently: an API economy. Within an API economy the value exchanged is our own data. It’s the standardised value exchange when signing up for (particularly free) services online. In …