23 August 2008

The aNobii API is just a joke.

With the aNobii API, you can't retrieve the ISBN of a book. Seriously. This means there is no chance to use it to develop any serious mashup, so I'm abandoning the service.

I feel for my Italian friends, locked in such a hacked-together platform.


Anonymous said...

I got a key/secret code myself, indeed they use only an internal identifier for books and do not expose ISBN numbers. This is... well, to put it nicely, a move of some team who do not really know what they are doing.

Also, any shelf can be retrieved only at (max) 10-book chunks. Don't know how GR handles that, but I found it a little disturbing.

However, as long as your Italian friends are not trying to develop anything on top of aNobii and being happy with what the application provides, I think they will be doing fine.

Moreover, we are not even that locked: I remember someone put together a little script to pass books data from aNobii to GR... ;-)

toyg said...

yeah, sorry, got a bit carried away with the frustration... I was ready to accept the 10-books "paginated" calls, even followed by hundreds of individually-threaded calls to get more specific book data, but even then they don't give you an ISBN, so really there is no way to use the api for anything else than trivial "here's my books" scripts.

GR uses standard RSS 2.0 (with an additional namespace), and they let you retrieve up to 200 books per call, with a good amount of details (ISBN, title, review, etc) and with the ability to filter by tag. I guess they'll probably lower the number a bit once people start using it heavily, but as long as they keep a good level of details (and the all-important ISBN), I'm fine with it.