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You’re Modernizing, Scaling & Connecting APIs the Hard Way

API Functionality in Unqork

Developers need to manage APIs at scale (more securely), modernize legacy APIs (quickly), and connect multiple services together for end-users (seamlessly). Unqork’s API Gateway makes this possible.

The API economy has grown into a billion-dollar market. Since Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) help drive digital transformation in software development, it’s easy to see why—after all, McKinsey found that the pandemic accelerated digital transformation efforts by three to four years.

APIs enable enterprises to move from monolithic software trapped “on-premise” to microservices-based applications living more freely in the cloud. A monolithic architecture relies on a single code base of tightly-coupled components, meaning that if any particular component has to change, the entire application must be touched and redeployed. This is untenable for complex digital transformation efforts.

Microservices are the solution. Smaller, domain-driven components are easier to build and maintain, since individual developers or teams can take responsibility for a specific domain. Designing software systems with loosely-coupled components makes it easier to update or scale your application as business needs grow.

Every enterprise has APIs, and every enterprise wants to make sure they are on the cutting edge of digital transformation. To quickly modernize legacy APIs, securely manage APIs at scale, and seamlessly connect multiple services together for end-users, developers need an API Gateway. 

Modernize, scale, and connect—oh my!

By building and exposing APIs, developers can enrich their business by being able to: 

  1. Layer data from other sources on top of their own

  2. Re-use logic and capabilities across their ecosystem

  3. Expose data externally, so others can build amazing things on top of it

However, there are a lot of steps to get there. Developers need to document the API, provide authentication, and have ongoing visibility into how it is being used.

The Unqork API Gateway allows you to configure this functionality without having to build it yourself. By providing an interface on top of your APIs that people connect through, the Gateway handles routing to wherever a request needs to go and turns on whatever authentication you need. The API Gateway can help you quickly adapt an API from something that is used internally to something that is external and modern, thus easily exposable to your end-users.

Designing software systems with loosely-coupled components makes it easier to update or scale your application as business needs grow.

Below is a deeper dive of the features and functionalities that make this possible, both quickly and securely.

Designer features

  • Rate limiting: Configurable through a single setting to ensure the stability of your APIs and protect against attacks, such as [D]DoS

  • RBAC: Create a standard authentication layer to provide access to all your APIs, including those built in Unqork and legacy APIs Unqork routes to.  Setup tiers of APIs and control access them with role, user and group management

  • Web application firewall (WAF): Protect your API servers by blocking bad actors at the source or only allowing known good actors to begin with

  • Service logging: Leverage detailed audit logs of every inbound and outbound request/response to APIs, as well as who made them

  • Monitoring: Analyze real-time metrics on API performance and customize alerts to know when things are trending the wrong direction before it becomes an issue for users

ExpressCloud features

  • Versioning: Easily version API endpoints to allow for innovation while maintaining backwards capability

  • WAF-like access controls: Utilize more fine-tuned controls for managing API access

  • Assign default values: Enrich API requests and responses without touching the underlying APIs themselves, allowing for easy data transformations and providing per-user customizations

  • XML <> JSON: Provide a modern interface for legacy APIs

  • Additional security: Prevent against common API attacks, like Mass Assignment

We want to make it easy for developers—at Unqork, we refer to them as Creators—to innovate. Streamlining, automating, and consolidating the API management process is just one of the headaches we are solving with our no-code application building platform.

About the Author

As Vice President of Solutions, Nick has led the technical design and implementation for a number of Unqork’s largest clients, including New York City, Goldman Sachs, and other Fortune 100 companies. This experience led him to found a new department pioneering the development of reusable patterns and extensions to the capabilities of the platform, all using Unqork. Prior to joining Unqork in the early stage, Nick spent his career in software development helping startups get off the ground and enterprises digitally transform. These roles took him around the world, gaining a deep passion and understanding of how to build global systems and how people will use them.

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