What the Heck Is an API Management Platform and Why Do I Need It

Picture of hamster

People in the world of IT toss around a lot of jargon that the uninitiated don’t always understand.

 

For example, most people have at least heard the term ‘API’ at some point, right?

 

But when it comes to understanding what APIs are, or what they do, that’s a different story.

 

And even if you do get APIs – what the heck is an API management platform? And why would you need something like that for your organization? It sounds extremely technical – intimidating, even.

 

Well, we’re here to tell you that it’s not.

 

Seriously.

 

In fact, at N2N, we’re all about making APIs simple for our customers. Let me explain.

 

So, first of all, APIs are basically just little connectors. If your organization’s databases and systems were a giant multi-cage hamster compound with those crazy tube passageways between each section, and your data was the hamster, then APIs would be the tubes connecting each section. They allow the hamster to run from one to the other – or, data to be communicated between 2 apps or databases or other programs.  

 

In an organization, though, you don’t just need a single pathway through your hamster cage.

 

You need that main cage – your primary database – to be connected to every smaller section of the cage compound – your other apps – directly. And you also need each smaller cage to be connected to every other smaller cage directly. That hamster needs to be able to run directly from the main cage into his bedroom, or from the main cage into his playroom…or from his bedroom to his bathroom, or from his bedroom into his dining room – all rooms need that direct connection. That’s a lot of tubes, right?

 

1 – This is where API management platforms come into play.

 

You’ve got two choices for your hamster.

 

You can either pay an artisan hamster cage maker to custom create new tubes for you, each time you decide to add a new room to the compound, connecting that new room with every other room in the cage. It takes him weeks each time, and costs a fortune – but nothing’s too good for Hammy, right?

 

Or, you can buy a hamster cage tube kit that’s been created with future expansion in mind, and has pre-built components that makes it super simple to snap in a couple new tubes yourself, whenever there’s a new addition.

 

Can you guess which one is the API management platform?

 

Custom coding APIs is crazy expensive and crazy time-consuming. Our API management platform, Illuminate, has pre-built API building blocks that anyone can snap together in minutes to connect all their apps and systems – and it leaves the future wide open for easy additions.

 

2 – So why do you need an API management platform?

 

Well, if you want your organization to grow, you’re going to be handling more and more hamsters as time goes on…and that means more cages, and more tubes.

 

The more tubes and cages you have to have directly connected with each other, the more expensive – and convoluted and precarious – your cage set-up is going to be.

 

You may also want to try out new cage configurations in the future, adding innovative new rooms to improve little ol’ Hammy’s quality of life – but are you really willing to shell out the big bucks for that artisan hamster cage maker to build you the connections those new rooms will necessitate, only to discover a few weeks later that Hammy doesn’t like those new rooms after all?

 

An API Management Platform like Illuminate gives your organization the agility to freely scale, adapt, and experiment as needed, because it makes API creation – and thus, integration – quick, easy, and affordable.  

 

Simple enough?

So if you want a happy hamster, call N2N today for more information or a free demo.

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