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June 27, 2007

Open APIs

The article Six Basic Truths About Free APIs has already received comments from George Siemens and Stephen Downes. Its important to read these posts carefully as we move into a more 'mashup'-oriented way of handling interoperability.

One of the concerns of using decentralized, commercial third-party services is that they can change pricing model, ownership, or privacy policy without much warning. In such an environment, people in education are rightly concerned. However, a practical solution we (as in, institutions) could take is to offer a free personal archiving service for staff and students - even if MySpace suddenly decides to start charging you money, you can get your scraped pages out of the archive and start the migration process.

In a more ideal world everything would offer full-content feeds so personal archiving would be quite trivial, but not all services, even those badged "Web 2.0" offer such capabilities.

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