© The Financial Times Ltd 2014 FT and 'Financial Times' are trademarks of The Financial Times Ltd.
An API is an application programming interface which specifies how programs should relate to one another. APIs contain protocols and tools for building software applications. APIs can be released to third party developers to allow them to develop tools to either query a database or to develop add on programs that will enhance a user experience, or allow more efficient interpretation of data. Google, for example, has a range of map APIs that allow users to embed maps on their own website.
In June 2013 Tweetdeck unveiled its new web design. It had announced in April that it would be ceasing support for some apps that rely on its older API.