Parse Developer Day Video Series: How to Design Great APIs

Here at Parse, we recognize that API design is one of the most important things for us to do well. Our whole product is an API that’s used by other developers. If we design it badly, there’s no reason to use our product. If we design it well, using Parse makes your life easier. So we spend a lot of time thinking about what makes an API great.

For Parse Developer Day, I thought it might help to talk about how we think about API design and how we judge whether an API is good, bad, or really great. To build a great API, it has to be intuitive. To maintain your great API, it has to have great documentation. And to build an engineering organization capable of expanding your great API, you have to be strongly opinionated.

In this video, I explain how a great API can use these points to appeal to the most powerful emotion of all. I also snark about some APIs that I don’t like and successfully manage not to giggle on stage. I hope it’s as fun to watch as it was to give this talk!

Kevin Lacker
October 2, 2013
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