Episode 8

Leveraging and Productizing your Data with Azure API Management

This month we’re talking with Shane Castle, ObjectSharp’s Cloud Practice Lead, all about Azure API Management, a scalable, multi-cloud API management platform for securing, publishing, and analyzing APIs. Listen and learn how companies are transforming their businesses by leveraging API Management to publish APIs to external, partner, and employee developers securely and at scale.

Listen to the Episode

Show Notes
  • 1:10 – Intro to the show – this episode on Azure API Management
  • 1:55 – Shane introduces himself to listeners
  • 2:50 – Nick provides a background on ObjectSharp and
  • 4:00 – Jeff and Shane talk about what API Management is and why people should care
  • 4:21 – API Management is all about exposing core business functions as a set of APIs to allow for automation of processes, either externally or internally within your business / organization
  • 5:00 – Shane compares API Management with previous point-to-point integrations that historically were more brittle than what’s possible with API Management today
  • 5:46 – Jeff asks Shane about how API Management is used to manage service levels
  • 6:25 – Shane talks about ObjectSharp’s experience in FinTech – the kinds of APIs that financial services companies want to build – and how they can be managed, monitored and versioned with Azure API Management
  • 7:40 – Jeff and Shane talk about whether this is just for new development or also for exposing APIs for legacy systems, with examples
  • 9:40 – Nick asks Shane to delve deeper into the functionality that is made available via API Management, starting with monitoring
  • 9:55 – Shane talks about Azure Monitor, Application Insights, etc. and the monitoring story that is available with API Management – including the ability to throttle API “products” with performance levels – if there’s an error, you can quickly diagnose it
  • 11:25 – Nick and Shane talk about how companies might use API Management to “productize” certain aspects of their business, and control the performance via throttling, etc.
  • 12:39 – Shane make analogy to brick and mortar economy – need to make sure the API is up and giving a good user experience – provides examples of online booking, exposing list of services to partner companies, etc. – makes it an exciting time to accelerate business with API Management
  • 14:00 – Nick and Shane talk about the developer story in addition to the business story of API Management – API Management exposes Open API / Swagger 2 definition – exposes pages with complete documentation on how to use and consume your API, and also provides a mock API framework for developers for testing, etc.
  • 17:00 – Nick asks Shane to talk about the kind of work he’s doing these days in the real world with companies in this space with API Management
  • 17:25 – Shane talks about how he works with clients first on the overall business strategy of API development: who’s the audience, who are the consumers; on security and governance, because it’s critically important that be done right from the outset; and then the actual dev work in terms of application development and devops
  • 19:25 – Shane talks about common patterns: (1) synchronous APIs – for transactions that have to happen immediately; (2) asynchronous transactions; and (3) batch API processes, where we’re moving large amounts of data through these APIs. ObjectSharp helps map business to these patterns and then implementing technically the APIs themselves.
  • 20:43 – Reality check – Jeff talks to Shane about hurdles that might occur in practice when getting started with API Management. Shane talks about both business and technical challenges, including change management required to be ready for a potential large transaction level made possible with APIs, and technically being able to monitor and respond to APIs once they are live.
  • 22:50 – Shane talks about the cloud adoption strategy which goes hand in hand with an API strategy – you need to think cohesively about these so that there’s no infrastructure waste or idle infrastructure – API management is an important part of your digital transformation strategy that shouldn’t be thought of in isolation

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