APIs Don’t Matter

The Virtuous Cycle
(Very) Simple Model of API Layering
Slightly More Realistic API Layering Model
API Layering after Time

Away from the OS

I’ve focused on devices and OS here but the discussion of APIs and layers applies to any place where unique capabilities are exposed. In the heyday of Office programmability, there were millions of developers whose job was building line-of-business applications on top of the Office apps. Office provided the experience framework for these applications as well as exposing a set of underlying capabilities (especially to embed content in a rich document that could be shared, viewed, emailed, annotated, filed, printed, analyzed) that offered a compelling and unique value proposition for an app developer. Some of these scenarios were chipped away by the web, while some (especially with Excel) are still incredibly relevant.



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Terry Crowley

Terry Crowley

Programmer, Ex-Microsoft Technical Fellow, Sometime Tech Blogger, Passionate Ultimate Frisbee Player