Global API Market is Growing

That’s a fact: the global API market is growing.

For example, the Persistence Market Research writes the following:

“Application Programming Interface (API) is emerging as one of the most important tools to provide access to data. Businesses are increasingly moving towards using APIs for digital transformation. API for companies is emerging as the important component to merge the old and new IT platforms and to capture and store a vast amount of data.(…) The report provided by the Persistence Market Research expects the global market for cloud API to grow significantly during 2017-2026.”

This growth is also confirmed by ProgrammableWeb: “The interest in providing APIs remains high”.

Growth in WebAPIs

Credit image @ProgrammableWeb

API Documentation is Crucial

If the API market is growing, the demand for relevant API documentation will grow too. Not only will your technical feats make the difference with competitors, but your ability to explain how to integrate it quickly and easily. (Developer’s) time is money: provide him with detailed, relevant information and sample codes to make the integration as easy as possible.

This is the job of the Technical Writer. By the way, his cost is lower than that of a developer.

A key feature for API technical writing is the ability to read code in one or more languages, and to extract relevant information from it.

Coffee Cup Services in API & SDK Documentation

Coffee Cup provides services in API & SDK documentation.

languages The documentation can be written in either English, French or German

My ability to read code to extract information to document or to know where to add descriptions include JSON, XML, PHP, NODEJS, Javascript, PYTHON and C++. I once documented a C API.

JAVADOC, Doxygen and other API documentations

APIs and SDKs have to be documented according to their specifications.

For example, JAVADOC will be worked directly in the JAVA source code. Doxygen allows generating documentation from C++ sources as well as many other languages. The more the comments are rich and relevant, the better the documentation will be. The documentation being generated in HTML format, the use of a template to get an attractive render is also possible.

Reference documentation include:

  • Methods, parameters, optional or required values, recommendations
  • Returned codes
  • Inheritances in the case of object programming APIs

User documentation include:

  • Overview, schemas, background information
  • Action-oriented features
  • Getting started
  • Tutorials
  • Status & error code lists
  • Troubleshooting
  • Glossary

If you rather have documentation apart from the API, this is also possible. Information will be “extracted” from the code and structured into a file.

Writing the documentation might require close working with the developer team (which doesn’t mean permanently of course).

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Doxygen, Visual Studio Code, Git and any other tools required to read/modify code, Postman, text editors, Hugo, Jekyll, Redoc, and WordPress.

The present website uses the Markdown syntax, the static site generator Hugo and a nice template.