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New Post 6/22/2010 2:24 PM
User is offline ivar
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Writing Requirements to Develop API 
Modified By ivar  on 6/22/2010 3:24:40 PM)

Writing Requirements to Develop API

How can a Business Analyst add value on project where the deliverable is API (Application Programming Interface) and NO user interface?

What kind of requirements artifacts to produce?

Any ideas appreciated?

 

 
New Post 6/22/2010 3:00 PM
User is offline David Wright
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www.iag.biz
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Re: Writing Requirements to Develop API 

 

People are not the only Actors who need to interact with your system, so do other systems. It would seem that you treat one or more systems as one type of Actor whose needs are met by the API. The interesting point when it is recognized that maybe some systems need a slightly different API, or changes to the API are needed to make it flexible enough to support different Actors., and from a Requirements perspective, those are different Actors no matter how an API is built.


David Wright
 
New Post 6/24/2010 5:49 AM
User is offline Bob Savage
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Re: Writing Requirements to Develop API 
You can still benefit from a basic functional analysis (e.g. Use Cases) or data flow analysis (DFD). You might also want to dig deeper and do an analysis of dependencies, or document deployment practices, these things depend upon your setting. The trick is, since you won't have much variety in the types of actors, you don't want to get overcomplicated. Think about who is using the API, and how they will be using it (possibly this will generate different scenarios for common usage patterns). Then document what the various user goals would be (this is precisely a Use Case); you want to document at least the goal, and any pre-reqs, any minimal guarantees, etc. You can get away with just documenting the parameters supplied and the return type (and possibly side-effects), instead of the interaction details. Note: the parameters and the return value (and possibly side-effects) can also be viewed as the data flows if you choose to go the DFD route instead. Best of luck.
 
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