On May 17th, Lex Machina hosted a webcast as part of the launch of their new API. The webcast featured Dave Slusher, Lex Machina’s Developer Advocate, who serves as a liaison between the API product and the developer community that uses it. It was hosted by Justin Brownstone, principal product manager at Lex Machina and project lead on the development of the API.
During the webcast, Dave provided an overview of API basics: what they are, how they are used, and examples of implementation. Dave also demonstrated an actual live use case and broke down in detail what an API offers. The presentation was intended for non-developers who are looking for a glimpse into the technical side of what Legal Analytics can offer.
Some of the discussion topics included:
- Overview of key API vocabulary
- Live examples of API implementation and usage
- Tips on how to take your API understanding from novice to pro
“What is an API? An API, at the highest level, is… a webpage for robots,” explained Dave Slusher. “It is the same mechanism that serves you a webpage, serves you an API response. It’s the same web server, it’s the same protocol, it’s all the same stuff. It’s just a different intention at the other end of it … you can think about the Lex Machina API as a data pipe… think about anything you can use that data for once you have access to the API.”
“One of the things I’m looking forward to is the first use of our API in a way I would never have even conceptualized,” Justin Brownstone noted. “There’s always different and creative ways our customers use the APIs – they do something you would never have dreamed and you never would have built for yourself. That’s part of the fascinating thing… once you have the data, whatever it is you think you need, you can just do.”