Meta-API is a SaaS platform for helping developers to integrate and automate APIs. You can use public APIs from our catalog or add your own private APIs.
What is an API?
An API is a interface dedicated for machine to machine communication.
The aim of an API is to help developers access to remote data or trigger remote action on a server for example. Thanks to APIs, your smartphone can retrieve weather inforation from OpenWeatherMap for example.
These APIs needs to be simple and accessible for developers.
Why should it be API First?
There are many technical ways to connect two remote system, but APIs and especially REST APIs have many advantages:
- Easy to understand: all REST APIs follow the same pattern and the same convention.
- Easy of use : based on HTTP protocol, you can make a request from any programming language and many libraries and clients exists to make requests even simpler.
- Industrial standard: more than 80% of companies are using Open API, a specification to describe REST API.
REST APIs can be used internally, externally or both.
There are a good start if you want to add modularity and a greater use and reuse of existing function inside your own software and if you want to expose an API to the public.
What is a Connector?
A connector is an API's endpoint implemented inside Meta API solution.
Connector's management is and will be more and more automated with new features to give you a better productivity when using APIs.
Whenever an API is added, all the endpoints are scanned and connectors are created for them.
A connector include:
- A specific interface for an easier use in the platform
- An enforcement on parameters and response schema
- On schedule specific monitoring during execution to verify the update of the connector
- A typed response schema for code creation and edition based on connector's response.
Authentification & OAuth
Most of the APIs need an authentication to access data and remote action.
There are 3 majors types of authentication:
- API key: the most common way to authenticate a request. The key is added inside a query parameter or in HTTP header. The key is static and can be managed on the vendor platform.
- OAuth: an advance way to give permission to a third party to access data or action on your behalf. OAuth will be used when you want, for example, to use services such as Google Spreadsheet or Slack.
- Token based auth: an alternative way to API Key which needs to generate a unique token in a custom way.
- HTTP Basic: the old one (and not so used) method to authenticate an user with the HTTP protocol
What is the difference between an API and a Connector?
An API is a collection of endpoints exposed under the same servers.
A connector is, in Meta-API context, the implementation of an endpoint inside the platform.
A lot of features are implemented whenever our team or users are adding a connector.
It is the link between your Spell and any API you want to use.
Our connectors are loaded with a lot of technology such as automatic monitoring, generated interfaces and change detection.
What is a Spell?
A Spell is a mix between connectors and your code, put together to automate actions and data exchange between APIs.
They are the consecration of our vision: making two APIs talking between each other and having the power to automate it.
Once done, a Spell is exposed through an API endpoint, its own API. We can also call a Spell a Meta-API 😉
Below subcomponents of a Spell:
- Dependencies: use NPM to add any JS/TS library inside a Spell
- Releases: execute live development inside the web editor and create new release to freeze your code and deploy it on different environment. A rollback is possible to switch back to previous version and change it in a snap
- Logs: all requests are logged and accessible through a dedicated interface, filtering them by status, environment and Spells.