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API Design

API design is the task of crafting interfaces to be used by an unknown amount of other developers. This is the case when designing APIs, SPIs, frameworks, and libraries but also—although to a lesser extend—when designing packages and layers.

The main difficulty of API design is, that any API needs to be stable. There is an unknown amount of other developers using the API so changing an interface results in a large amount of code to break. So while normally it is more or less easy to refactor an interface, this is not possible for APIs. Rather, obsolete interfaces typically have to be marked deprecated and maintained for years before they can be removed. Because of that, a different set of principles is needed here. KISS (the simplicity of the implementation) is much less relevant. EUHM (more or less the simplicity of the interface) on the other hand may be even more important.

contexts/api_design.txt · Last modified: 2013-06-14 19:16 by christian