Beta Release of the Symbaloo API

The last couple of months the development team worked hard on realizing the Symbaloo API. The API is the next step in the evolution of Symbaloo and its a big step. Lots of you guys/girls probably have a lot of questions after reading this.

What.. you can’t wait?

Go to this page and try it yourself: http://developer.symbaloo.com

Otherwise, let me explain some things.

What exactly is an API?

API is the short name for Application Programming Interface. “What?” you might think… To explain it in normal words: an API gives the possibilty for computer programs or websites to communicate and exchange data in a standardized way. A lot of big online Services have API’s to expose their data and features to their visitors via different ways then just the website. Good examples are Twitter, Google or Facebook.

So to summarize, it allows users to use their data that is stored within Symbaloo in other applications.

For the detailed explanation I will refer to the Wikipedia page. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Application_programming_interface)

What can you do with the API?

A couple of services of the API are available for everyone, the rest is only accessible for accountholders. Think about our database of bookmarks that is available to search, or our webmix gallery that you can search in. Other services are private for Symbaloo users, like their private webmixes.

To make it easier for developers to create applications for you, but also be sure that no third party will get your password, we implemented the industry-standard of OAuth authentication. This is a system when you grant an external party explicit right to read and/or alter your Symbaloo account. If you dont want that, you just dont give an application the right. With that we store your settings for you.

So what are some examples someone can do with the API? Well first of all, you probably need some programming skills to create tools ar applications that use the API. If you do have those skills applications like these can be made:

  • Create an Importing and exporting tool.
  • Widgets for on your blog with your favorite links of Symbaloo can be created
  • A mobile version of Symbaloo could be made with your favorite links
  • Custom search engines can be made with the search results of our database
  • Create new bookmarktools for different browsers with extended features

But maybe you’ve got even better ideas.

Are you a developer?

Well, if you are a developer and share our love for Symbaloo, register for an API key here: http://developer.symbaloo.com/registeforapi.html. We have set up some tools for you to help you in the process. Like an online testing tool to see the data the API will return. All services are explained in the documentation, including good links to connecting via OAuth. And we have set up a special forum on our Service system for developers her: http://service.symbaloo.com/index.php?p=community&/forum/84-symbaloo-api. If there are questions, feel free to ask on the forum or throught the contact form on http://developer.symbaloo.com/contact.html

I hope this blog post clarifies what the Symbaloo API is and what it can do. Because it is still in Beta, we really want to hear the developers feedback, so we can soon release it officially.

Good luck developing and hooray for the developers here!

Koen Dantuma

CTO Symbaloo

Links:

Where can I register: http://developer.symbaloo.com

What is an API: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Application_programming_interface

Where can I get help: http://service.symbaloo.com/index.php?p=community&/forum/84-symbaloo-api

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