The power of Apidapter is derived from its flexible API translation service. Despite the mix of product-specific and standards-based protocols and API interfaces, Apidapter overcomes these variation challenges by translating requests between systems on-the-fly through an adapter. This can include:
- authenticating users,
- passing data elements,
- modifying or generating contextual information,
- debugging requests and responses, and
- logging of transactions.
Such translation is especially helpful when the underlying data is either incomplete or incompatible with the pairing system.
A. Let’s say you have an onsite student information system (SIS) which populates users in your iClicker tool. Here usernames are of the form firstname_lastname (e.g. bob_smith). Recently you tried integrating iClicker into your learning management system (LMS) Blackboard. As luck would have it Blackboard is run as a shared, hosted instance across the entire state. Therefore because the LMS is also used at other schools its user identifiers look like firstname_lastname_schoolname (e.g. bob_smith_tvcc), which sadly doesn’t line up. In the past you likely would have had to modify your identifiers, ask your vendor to develop a custom integration plug to handle this incompatibility, or build one yourself.
- Not with Apidapter. All you’d need to do is configure your adapter to append your school name (e.g. _tvcc) to each request and you are fully integrated in minutes.
B. In this second example you are trying to reintegrate a third party syllabus tool into your new Canvas LMS using the learning tools interoperabilty standard (LTI). The tool is expecting to receive the user identifier as a part of the standard LTI parameters. However you come to learn that after the switch the user identifier is now under a custom parameter (e.g. custom_canvas_user_id) that is not part of the base LTI set and one which the third party tool does not recognize. Moreover, the course identifier (e.g. ACCT_1010_SP13_2A) now contains hyphens instead of underscores (e.g. ACCT-1010-SP13-2A).
- Using Apidapter you can be back on your feet in moments. Setup your adapter to remap the new custom parameter to the one the tool was originally expecting, turn underscores into hyphens and your done.
C. With this final example you are trying to achieve two goals. One is to integrate CoursEval in your Moodle LMS using LTI in such a way that a number of course sections in the LMS share the same general course survey and the results are anonymized. Two is to provide access to CoursEval for administrators from entirely outside the LMS using your campus LDAP server. The problem is the tool was only designed to work within the LMS and therefore does not include options for LDAP integration. In the past this might have required significant planning and investment by both school and vendor. In all likelihood it would have simply been deemed impossible and entirely abandoned.
- Well, Apidapter makes the impossible, possible. In the first part Apidapter can be used to strip sectional information from the course parameter so that all sections of the course for that term point at the same survey. Simultaneously a second adapter can process incoming authentication requests, check them against your LDAP server, and then turn these into the LTI protocol so that your survey tool can use them.
The combinations are endless. The value unparalleled.