Using Personal APIs in a University Setting
The API economy is in full swing and numerous commercial entities are engaged in producing APIs as a way of extending their reach. But as more and more of life is intermediated by computers, individuals also benefit from providing a personal API that can be used by applications on equal footing with other APIs.
Brigham Young University is teaching students about digital autonomy so that they are better prepared to be lifelong learners. In addition to a Domain of One's Own project, we have also embarked on a program of giving each student a personal API. By making students responsible for their own data, we teach them that they can be active participants in the digital realm. In addition to profile information, the API is also a means of accessing the student's personal learning record system (LRS). Students grant university and other systems access to the resources in their API. The personal API provides the same features that other APIs have including API management and authorization. The personal API works in concert with BYU's University API to create a rich, permissioned data ecosystem for application developers inside and outside the university. This talk will discuss design principles, implementation decisions, initial projects, and our experience to date.
Phil Windley is an Enterprise Architect in the Office of the CIO at Brigham Young University. A passionate tech educator, he is the co-founder and organizer of the Internet Identity Workshop, serves as an Adjunct Professor of Computer Science at BYU, writes the popular Technometria blog, and is the author of the books The Live Web published by Course Technology in 2011 and Digital Identity published by O'Reilly Media in 2005. Phil serves on the Boards of Directors and Advisory Boards for several high-tech companies.
Phil has been a professor of Computer Science at Brigham Young University (twice) and the University of Idaho. In addition, Phil was the Founder and Chief Technology Officer of Kynetx, the company behind the open-source connected-car product, Fuse. He also spent two years as the Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the State of Utah in 2001-2002, serving on Governor Mike Leavitt's Cabinet and as a member of his Senior Staff. Before entering public service, Phil was Vice President for Product Development and Operations at [email protected] He was the Founder and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of iMALL, Inc. an early creator of ecommerce tools. Phil received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Univ. of California, Davis in 1990.