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Designing Web APIs by Amir Shevat, Saurabh Sahni, Brenda Jin

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Chapter 7: Building a developer ecosystem strategy

Building a scalable, well architectured, API is a great start, but if you want the API to be used you will need to do much more than just release it. The saying "we will build it and they will come" is a common misconception among many companies who release APIs and do not understand why developers do not rush to use it.

The profession of building a developer and partner ecosystem is called Developer Relations. Let's define what is an ecosystem in the context of a developer platform or an API -

Very much like an ecosystem in nature, a developer ecosystem is a virtual system of members that are collaborating, depending, and sometime competing over the same platform, technology or API.

There are many examples of developers ecosystems, and some of the best ones are self organizing - Google and Android have an amazing developer ecosystem and community, iOS developer flock to meetups and collaborate together, Microsoft has a strong multi-faceted developer and partner ecosystem.

In this chapter, we will discuss what composes a great ecosystem and what how companies building these ecosystems around the APIs do so successfully. 

Developer Developer Developers 

Developers can do great things with an API, they can extend and improve your company's product (Slack Apps make Slack better) they can use it and be your clients (Google cloud service), and they can help with the adoption of your platform/OS (iOS became popular due to the millions ...

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