December 20th, 2012

Top 5 Layer 7 Blog Posts from 2012

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Top 5 Layer 7 Blog Posts of 2012To follow up on our Top 5 Resources post from last week, here’s a look at the five most popular, most thought-provoking or just-plain-best posts from the Layer 7 blog in 2012. Mainly though, these are just personal favorites and I should note that they’re arranged chronologically (oldest first), not in order or preference.

The Oracle-Versus-Google Verdict Comes Down
June saw a remarkable amount of media coverage focusing on the world of APIs, as the Oracle/Google court case made headlines. Layer 7’s Jaime Ryan was relieved that the ruling stated APIs are not protected by copyright. Jaime said: “By taking a strong stand on the issue… the judge has possibly prevented a whole new round of lawsuits that could have rivaled the still-ongoing Apple/Samsung/Google patent wars.”
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Are Open APIs Too Open for Big Business?
In July, Ronnie Mitra took a detailed look at how nervous major social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook were becoming about their open APIs and concluded that “enterprises will need to adapt or risk being unable to reach their customers as the device revolution continues at its explosive pace… Organizations need to think carefully and plan their API strategies in order to find the perfect balance between control and accessibility.”
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Why I Still Like OAuth
In the midst the controversy surrounding July’s formalization of OAuth 2.0, Scott Morrison launched a passionate, though qualified, defense of the standard. Scott argued that “sometimes you just have to declare a reasonable victory and deal with the consequences later. OAuth isn’t perfect, nor is it easy. But it’s needed and it’s needed now, so let’s all forget the personality politics and just get it done.”
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History Repeats: The Search for Agility & Reuse Through APIs
This September, Dimitri Sirota visited the SDP Global Summit in Rome and noticed how much of the discussion around telecom carriers’ API initiatives echoed the SOA talk of a decade ago. He noted “telco after telco (echoed) the decade-old SOA mantra of abstraction, agility and reuse when talking about their new API initiatives… But if Web APIs are to deliver on the SOA vision of agility and reuse, they will need some of the same plumbing that made Web services work.”
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RESTful or Not?
Also in September, Mike Amundsen provided an explanation of the key term “RESTful”, which is so often used in reference to APIs and Web services. Mike explained: “Essentially, REST… is a style. Specifically, it’s a style of network-based software architecture. This style was first defined in 2000 by Roy Fielding. Fielding stated that ‘an architectural style is a coordinated set of architectural constraints that has been given a name for ease of reference’.”
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December 10th, 2012

Top 5 Resources from Layer 7 in 2012

Top Layer 7 ResourcesThis year has seen incredible growth in the API economy, particularly as it relates to the proliferating mobile app ecosystem. At Layer 7 technologies, we are committed to helping enterprises understand these issues through a range of thought leadership activities. As a part of this, we’ve published a great deal of content in our Resource Library during 2012. With the year drawing to a close, it seems like a great opportunity to review some of the most popular pieces.

We tackled issues around mobile and BYOD head-on in a white paper called Secure Mobile Access for Enterprise Employees, which describes how enterprises can securely open their data and application functionality to mobile devices via custom-made apps. Another popular white paper was Federated Identity & Single Sign-On, which explores identity federation for API, mobile, SOA and cloud.

Our webinars featuring input from Forrester Research also drew a lot of interest, especially A Practical Guide to API Security & OAuth for the Enterprise, which provided real-world insight into deploying OAuth as the access control component of a complete API Management solution. Forrester also helped us explore enterprise mobile enablement in another webinar, How to Make Your Enterprise Applications Mobile Ready, Fast.

Looking to the future, Layer 7 will be publishing a series of eBooks, outlining essentials for addressing key issues around API Management and Mobile Access. We got a great reaction from the first of these, called 5 Ways to Get Top Mobile App Developer Talent for Your Open APIs. Over the coming months, we’ll also be publishing eBooks talking about mobile enablement and OAuth. Be sure to watch out for those!

August 22nd, 2012

From the Vault: Understanding Mobile IAM with Forrester Research

Forrester WebinarsIn the new hybrid enterprise, organizations need to manage business functions that flow across their domain boundaries in all directions. Increasingly, this means using APIs as conduits for opening up information to services running in the cloud and apps running on mobile devices like the iPad. For enterprises, securing and governing these APIs is not straightforward.

Meanwhile, BYOD is making Mobile Access an urgent issue for enterprises; forcing them to make application functionality available to app developers in a consistent, easily-consumable, mobile-optimized manner, via APIs. Therefore, enterprise technologies are evolving to support API-based mobile interactions.

Identity and access management (IAM) represents a key concern for enterprise IT and it is particularly crucial in BYOD/enterprise mobile scenarios. Mobile IAM requires fundamentally new approaches and the adoption of new standards such as OAuth.

These are some of the most critical issues facing IT departments today but the associated techniques and technologies are not necessarily that well understood in the enterprise world. Therefore, I’d like to take this opportunity to  flag up some relevant webinars from the Layer 7 archive, all of which feature Forrester Research.

If you’re facing the challenge of ensuring secure access in an enterprise mobile scenario, these resources should help you make sense of the issues:

  • How to Make Your Enterprise Applications Mobile Ready, Fast
    Leverage backend mobile middleware to deliver mobile ready enterprise APIs
    Find out more >>
  • Identity, Access & Privacy in the New Hybrid Enterprise
    Make sense of OAuth, OpenID Connect and UMA
    Find out more >>
  • A Practical Guide to API Security & OAuth for the Enterprise
    Implement OAuth as part of an enterprise-level API security solution
    Find out more >>
May 18th, 2012

From the Vault: The Tech Talk Tuesday Archive

Layer 7 Tech Talk Tuesday ArchiveA few months back, Layer 7 launched Tech Talk Tuesday, a series of interactive developer meet-ups focusing on all things API, broadcast through the company’s Facebook and Livestream pages. We know it’s not always easy to catch a live event like Tech Talk Tuesday, so we’ve also been making recordings of the sessions available in the Videos section of our Resource Library.

We have some pretty exciting things planned for upcoming Tech Talks. The next regular Tech Talk will be a discussion of “Swagger, WADL & API ‘Scriptions” on May 29. You can click here to add it to your calendar. We’re also planning to stream a very special Tech Talk from the upcoming Glue Conference. Watch this space for more details.

For all the latest Tech Talk news – as well as quick-and-easy access to archived broadcasts – you can visit the Tech Talk Tuesday page on our Web site.

January 13th, 2012

FROM THE VAULT: White Paper – The Value of Application Service Governance for Cloud Computing

Value of SOA Governance for CloudAs 2012 begins, it definitely seems like Cloud computing will continue to be a hot issue in enterprise IT, with the impetus driving large organizations into the Cloud continuing to gather pace. Consequently, there’s going to be a growing need for information on how services run in the Cloud can be governed in order to ensure data security and maximize performance.

Many of Layer 7’s customers have already made the move into the Cloud. These companies have benefited greatly from our expertise in governance for SOA. This is because SOA governance is directly applicable to the Cloud. Our white paper The Value of Application Service Governance for Cloud Computing provides a detailed explanation of this connection.

Written by internationally-respected SOA/Cloud thought leader David Linthicum, in collaboration with our own Scott Morrison, this white paper outlines how the structure of SOA – services distributed across departments and locations – is at the core of all Cloud computing. So, governance principles that are effective in SOA also work in the Cloud.

To learn more, download The Value of Application Service Governance for Cloud Computing.