We have introduced a tour to API Harmony! We have found that people don’t necessarily use all of the extensive functionality that we’ve developed over the last couple of years. We want to make it easier to do that so that you can all benefit from what we have built. We’ve also hooked the tour up to Google Analytics so that we can tweak it based on the data that we see. The more we know about how people use API Harmony, the more we can improve it. I’ll take you through the thought process behind the tour, which we implemented using the open source library Shepherd.
The first thing that we expect users to do on the API Harmony home page is to type something into the search bar and hit enter. The search results that appear as a result are annotated with icons indicating whether we’ve generated lessons learned or code snippets for the API. However, a new user may not be familiar with what these terms mean. To solve this problem, the first time you visit we light up these icons and concisely explain them.
The next thing a user might do is click on one of the web APIs listed in the results. This brings them to a page packed with StackOverflow questions, Github usage examples, endpoints, and much more. We guide users to the features on this page that will equip them to start making calls to the API.
Our tour of the page ends by telling users to select an endpoint. Doing this triggers a mini tour through the unique tools we have to offer for each endpoint: request and response snippets, the ability to make requests in the browser through our Playground, a summary of the different parameters that can be passed in, and so on. If a user navigates to the Playground, they can see a tutorial to get started.
We think that these brief but informative tours will make it possible for developers to hit the ground running with API Harmony. Since we fire off events to Google Analytics whenever someone interacts with the tour, we will be able to iterate to make the user experience the best possible. We look forward to seeing the feedback and we hope you give it a go!