Google launches discovery service for its APIs

Google now provides an API that can be used to find all the other Google APIs

Developers wishing to embed into their own applications some of the Web services that Google offers should take a look at a new directory service the company has launched.

The Google APIs Discovery Service, which debuted Monday, offers a central location to find the APIs (application programming interfaces) for all Google Web services offered for third-party use, such as its calendars, spreadsheets, YouTube video delivery and translation services. Overall, Google offers more than 25 APIs, all based on REST (Representational State Transfer).

The service itself is available by way of an API, according to a blog post announcing the offering. The API allows developers to build their own client libraries and integrated developer environment plug-ins to access these resources.

Google itself developed a number of different clients that expose this information, including an Eclipse plug-in, a Web explorer and client libraries for Java, Microsoft .NET, PHP, Python and Ruby.

For each API, the new discovery service offers a JSON (JavaScript Object Notation)-based schema that describes the resource. It also has a list of methods that can be used to interact with the resource, authorization rules as described in OAUTH, and in-line documentation illustrating the proper way to format an API request.

All the exposed APIs reside on Google's revamped API infrastructure, which simplifies the internal maintenance of the APIs, according to the company.

Joab Jackson covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Joab on Twitter at @Joab_Jackson. Joab's e-mail address is Joab_Jackson@idg.com

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