Yahoo! opened up their search platform with a new API product Yahoo! BOSS. The BOSS API lets you submit a search query and get web, news and image search results in XML or JSON formats.
I wrote up a basic python client to get web results from the BOSS API and integrated it with the new Daylife customization wizard that lets you add a web search module on any daylife page.
Our friends at Yahoo! have gotten a great response from the launch of the BOSS API. To kick it up a notch, they have offered a bonus prize of $2000 (woot!) to raise the stakes in the Daylife Developer Challenge.
The BOSS API is pretty simple to use. You can combine queries using logical operators, apply filters such as exclude hate and filter content, simply paginate through the results and one simple feature that makes me happy – it returns the total result count!
There is also a BOSS Mashup Framework that you can use to build a BOSS application. Also, there is a screencast from Vik Singh in the BOSS team to use the API.
I saw a demo of Trendrr at the Apr 1st New York Tech meetup. Seemed like an easy way to throw all your data at one place and get some graphs in basic layouts (line,bar,area charts). Mark Ghuneim well utilized his 5 minute demo slot to show what trendrr can do and how their users have used their API. The best graph I liked was the one tracking someone’s CPU usage. You can then embed these graphs anywhere you want or export the data as xml, json or even an excel spreadsheet.
So I got my hands dirty today playing with the Trendrr API to push trending data in news from daylife about any topic. Signed up on trendrr.com, read some documentation about how to use the API and jumped right in. I have written a php script that is calling the daylife API to get the data and the trendrr api to publish it.
I have hosted the script for you to create your own trendrr graphs (more details below) or download it to customize the data that you send to trendrr.
Here are some of the graphs:
Here is my feedback to the Trendrr folks:
- The API is great because its simple
- Its always tricky to keep things simple and introduce advanced features. The graph currently is exported as an image. If it could be exported as HTML, I would love to have the capability to click on the data point and go to the real source of that data. In that case, the trendrr API will need to accept a link along with each data point. The timeline widget on the daylife.com topic pages support similar functionality.
- The delay between sending the data through the API and it showing up on the graphs is pretty significant. It would be great if does not take more than a minute.
Read more below about how I implemented the mashup of Trendrr and Daylife APIs.