1.8 Make it Easy to AccessApril 15th, 2009 — Marieke Guy
External developers are important, they can potentially add value to your service so you need to make it easy for them to do so and make sure that there is a low barrier to access. The maximum entry requirements should be a login (username and password) which then emails out a link.
If it is for a specific institution and contains what could be confidential information then it will need to contain some form of authentication that can be transmitted in the request.
If you need to use a Web API key make it straightforward to use. You should avoid the bottle neck of user authorisation, an overly complex or non-standard authentication process. One option is publish a key that anyone can use to make test API calls so that people can get started straight away. Another is to provide a copy of the service for developers to use that is separate from your production service. You could provide a developer account, developers will need to test your API so try to be amenable. If you release an open API then it needs to be open.
Make sure you support Linked Data. Also publish resources that reflect a well-conceived domain model and use URIs that reflect the domain model.