Basic Understanding Of APIs For The Python Beginners

Basic Understanding Of APIs For The Python Beginners

I have worked on many programming projects throughout my college years that required me to code by scratch or be forced to use static data files. But the professors never taught me how flexible or convenient the use of public APIs could be when incorporated with coding.

I have worked on many programming projects throughout my college years that required me to code by scratch or be forced to use static data files. But the professors never taught me how flexible or convenient the use of public APIs could be when incorporated with coding.

I began learning about the usage of APIs from my job and online research. You may now be wondering “what do APIs do?” An API allows two applications to talk to each other and send data over using HTTP requests via the URL endpoints from the source site. You may have seen certain applications that use maps from Google maps API or historical stock data from Robinhood API. The data is flowing from the use of GET requests from these source sites. Today, I will discuss the fundamentals of using APIs in Python coding with all of you Python beginners in mind!

Understanding How API Works

An API is also known as an application programming interface, and this server is used to retrieve or send data for your Python coding. It is the best way to retrieve data (compared to manually adding the data daily dynamically). We can use API to call public APIs from popular sites such as Youtube, Spotify, Google, and many others, to grab certain data based on what your application is doing. Please note that many APIs may require you to create a developer account to retrieve an API key to access their API server — e.g., Youtube API. This is because many of these sites prefer not to have random strangers access their data straight from their terminal. Instead, it is required that each person has a unique API key even to have access to that public API. There may also be APIs that will cost money to use. Therefore it depends on what you are using it for.

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