APIs: Crash Course

With the Facebook API & Twilio
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  • Lectures 19
  • Length 2 hours
  • Skill Level All Levels
  • Languages English
  • Includes Lifetime access
    30 day money back guarantee!
    Available on iOS and Android
    Certificate of Completion
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About This Course

Published 4/2013 English

Course Description

Are you a creative or entrepreneur that wishes you could speak tech with your web development team? Sure, you’ve heard about APIs, but maybe you’re not totally sure what they are?

In this class we’ll learn all about APIs: what they are; and how to get started using them! Later on we’ll look at some code and live data from both Facebook and Twilio.

One last thing... If you're new to programming - you might also want to check out my Programming For Non-Programmers.

Hey Chris, what's an API?

Here's an example: have you ever heard someone say something like, “The NY Times has an API we can use.”? What they are saying is "The NY Times has some data that you can freely access and use in your project."

In addition to that, the term API can also refer to apps that write and process data on our behalf. We’ll cover this, and much more!

Who Is this Class For?

This class is made for the total beginner. If you’re looking to learn about APIs you’re in the right place. If you’re a developer looking to query some API data, we’ll be providing you with code examples to take home.

For Non-Programmers

Maybe you're new to APIs? Or you've had one of the IT guys in your office try to explain this to you before, but to no avail? I totally get it, and so I've designed this class with you in mind.

What I’ve found is that the best way to learn the concepts of programming is to actually write some code yourself. (Much like how we learn a foreign language - you have to use the knowledge). If you’re not a developer, you should still be able to follow along with the code examples because we'll break down the logic step-by-step. Basically what I’m saying is... that we’ll learn by doing here.

Sign up for this class and you’ll learn:

  • What is an API?
  • How an understanding of APIs can help cut development time of a project in half
  • What APIs are available and worth knowing about?
  • How to register a Facebook App so that we can start using the Facebook API
  • How to write code to make an API call to Facebook that delivers a user’s “Top 10 Facbook likes”
  • How to set up an app with the Twilio API

This Class Includes

  • Over 2 hours of easy to follow video content
  • A project designed by me for you to be able to apply your skills
  • A quiz
  • The final slide deck
  • Code examples for working with the Facebook and Twilio API. All fo the code in this class is written in PHP. The concepts are the same and could easily be applied to Ruby, Python or other languages.

I’m looking forward to class!


Feedback from my Programming For Non-Programmers Series:

"You taught the class in four hours what took me two years to teach myself." - Matt Jared, Capital Factory Austin, X

"I've traveled a steep learning curve thanks to Chris' friendly and lucid style of teaching." - Charles Best, CEO of DonorsChoose.org

"I wish I had taken this class 5 years ago!" - Michael Goodwin, UX Designer

"You are the only person who has been able to sufficiently teach me code." - Darren Hakimi, Analyst

"You are Articulate and Engaging. Broad and Diverse Range of Topics. That s right bro!!!!! Not easy to address so much in limited time." - student feedback

"Informative, digestible, actionable" - Katherine, Entrepreneur

What are the requirements?

  • Download & install Sublime Text - http://www.sublimetext.com/
  • Follow the course prerequisite videos if you're an absolute beginner and you need help getting setup with HTML & Sublime

What am I going to get from this course?

  • By the end of this course you will be able to code with API data from Facebook, Twilio & more!

Who is the target audience?

  • Absolute beginner to intermediate developer

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee.

Forever yours.
Lifetime access.

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android.

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion.


Section 1: Prerequisites
Not your mother's stereo instructions. You'll actually want to read this. (It's short and painless... I promise). 

Here's all the code examples so that you can follow along. Also included are my final projects so that you can check your progress.

The files you need are to the right (most likely depending what device you are on)... look for the download button.

You'll need a text editor. Here's how to get started!
What's the difference between HTML & CSS? How do I get started? This 5 minute primer will help get you on the right foot. 
In the last video you saw how to preview a webpage using just HTML & CSS. This lesson shows how the role of a Web server is necessary for launching code using a backend language like PHP. 
Section 2: Crash Course: APIs
A step by step breakdown of what an API is using real world examples, metaphors and case studies. Let's go! 
In order to understand how an API works technically, you'll need to know a bit more about databases. This is an overview. 
We've been learning about databases and data. Now we'll look closer at the SQL language, the language of databases. 
Database Quiz (answers)
Let's see some examples in action so that we can get better at spotting APIs in the wild. 
The two languages of APIs: XML & JSON help us format and move around data. 
API Quiz (answers)
Section 3: The Facebook API
Let's get started with the Facebook API. To use their API you'll need to have a Facebook account. From there we'll implement the most basic API call (one that you are no doubt familiar with): the "like" button. Afterwards we'll setup a threaded comment box using the Facebook API. 
The Graph API is the heart of Facebook's data firehose. Let's look at how we can get the most out of this feed. 
Section 4: The Twilio API and Beyond
In this video we dive even deeper into the Facebook API pulling photos to make a blog based on our live Facebook data. I'll show you how to traverse data from Facebook the easy way: using the Graph API Explorer. 
What else can we do with the Facebook API?
The Twilio API allows you to write code that interacts with phone calls and SMS messages. In this video we'll launch an app that does just that! 
Now that we've coded a few projects using API data, where do we go from here? I'll show you a few of my favorite uses for API data that will hopefully inspire your own projects moving forward! 
Wrap Up

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Instructor Biography

Christopher Michael, Co-Founder of OneMonth.com

Chris is the co-founder of One Month (an online school for entrepreneurs) and host of the On Books podcast.

He has over ten years of experience developing digital products for clients ranging from The Black Eyed Peas, Toyota, Bacardi, and American Express.

In 2013 Chris spoke at over 70 events on programming and APIs. He's taught at Columbia University, The University of Amsterdam, CUNY, and SXSW.

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