The Integration blog covers the latest in product updates, best practices, customer stories, and more.

  • May 15, 2017

API Platform for teams who want to focus on building great products

Robert Wunderlich
Product Strategy Director

Oracle announced the availability of its new API Platform Cloud Service.  This offering is a truly hybrid solution to delivering APIs, but goes well beyond just simple API Management.  

API Platform Cloud Service is designed for teams who build APIs and who want to focus on building great products.  Up until now, API teams had to stitch together multiple tools, which caused them to lose focus.   API Platform Cloud Service is the only solution that supports the complete API Lifecycle and it allows developers, architects and the business leaders to work together to build great products!

To understand this further, let's take a look at the lifecycle of an API


The term "API" is loosely thrown around and often incorrectly applied to a hastily implemented REST service.  I've heard of people pointing to a REST service and calling it an API.  That service lacks any sort of documentation (first step of API in programming 101) and is often just an exposing of some underlying data-object in REST/JSON form.

To create effective APIs actually involves multiple people!  First, well developed API begins with the end in mind.  Meaning, rather than just exposing some sort of underlying implementation, we actually consider what is the desired outcome?  Are we creating the next mobile app, or the next chatbot, or the next technology we have not even considered?  How does that client need to interact with the system?  Great APIs begin with an idea and a design around that idea and can come from multiple participants.  To foster this communication and collaboration, we need a solid "API aware" whiteboard.

Oracle Apiary provides a robust API design, collaboration, documentation and testing platform that facilities the design discussions of an API.  Using Oracle Apiary, multiple participants from different parts of the enterprise and even outside of the enterprise can collaborate, design and test their API ideas.  A key benefit to Oracle Apiary is that just by working together and defining what the API should do, a mock service and documentation is automatically created!

A mock service is a sample service based on the design and allows application developers to begin creating their applications, chatbots, etc based on the design while service developers and API Managers work on the implementation in parallel.  Beyond just a mock service, using Oracle Apiary, interface testing can be included to regularly test the implementation of the API and to alert the team if the implementation and the design ever diverge.  This rapidly speeds delivery while reducing project risk.

Once the API is implemented, there is a cycle of granting the appropriate consumers to be able to use the API, publishing the API to make it discoverable and to allow consumers to find it and use it.  There also needs to be the ability to analyze the performance of the API and to manage it in its lifecycle.

Functional testing is very important for a successful API strategy.  API Fortress expands testing from interface testing to deep-level testing of the APIs.  Using API Fortress, you can validate not only the interfaces of the APIs but also the message structures.  This further reduces risk as changes to the service implementation that can break your consumers are caught with API Fortress and you are alerted.  Using Oracle Apiary to begin with a design-first approach to your APIs further helps you in the lifecycle because API Fortress connects to Apiary and can build out your tests right from your design in Apiary!

Using Oracle API Platform and Oracle Apiary with API Fortress provides you a complete API Lifecycle that allows your team to focus on the most important thing, delivering great product!


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