The Zapier Engineering Blog

A blog about hacking, development workflow automation, and how to get things done with less work.

8 Great Examples of Developer Documentation

Adam DuVander / January 12, 2017

You just received an email from an angry developer. Something is wrong in your documentation, and the developer just spent hours figuring it out. Now it's your turn to update the documentation and figure out how to avoid those issues in the future. But how?

It’s hard to...

3 Ways to Make Your API Responses Flexible

Adam DuVander / January 5, 2017

Flexible wrench for flexible API -- photo by Creative Tools

Most APIs deliver their responses the exact same way to every client. That’s by design; developers need to know what to expect.

There are plenty of circumstances where what’s returned is not quite what a developer wants, though. Some APIs provide flexibility in the types and amount of...

Plan Your GitHub Streak and Make Code a Habit

Adam DuVander / December 29, 2016

Around four years ago, a college student named Ryan Seys received a challenge from a friend. It was not your typical collegiate dare. Ryan’s friend instead suggested they both attempt to commit public code to GitHub for 30 days straight. The friend just made it a week, but Ryan...

How to Attend Conferences as an Introvert

Adam DuVander / December 22, 2016

How many introverted programmers does it take to tell a light bulb joke? One. It does not have to be a group activity, and the other can check for off-by-one errors.

In addition to being witty, this programming joke also represents the classic stereotype of the introverted programmer. It might...

Add Webhooks to Your API the Right Way

Adam DuVander / December 15, 2016

In the last 10 years, APIs have gone from nice-to-have to must-have, certainly for Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) applications. At the same time, users today are more impatient and expect more instant and interconnected apps. To answer user needs, developers are now adding webhooks to their APIs. Webhooks are the mechanism through...

8 Resources for Keeping Up on APIs

Adam DuVander / December 8, 2016

We really love APIs. They're what power Zapier, and many of our team have been built and supported them throughout our careers.

Yet, keeping up on such a rapidly-changing topic as APIs can be a daunting task. There's no best API trade magazine to keep in your lobby...

Make Your API as Popular as Pie

Adam DuVander / November 30, 2016

Everybody likes pie, right? There are many kinds of pie to choose from, you would think every pie would get eaten. Yet, every day many pies go uneaten, which is undeniably sad for the many who would want to eat that pie.

But this post is about APIs. Like pie...

Scaling Zapier to Automate Billions of Tasks

Bryan Helmig / March 2, 2016
Scaling Zapier

Zapier is a web service that automates data flow between over 500 web apps, including MailChimp, Salesforce, GitHub, and Trello.

Imagine building a workflow (or a "Zap" as we call it) that triggers when a user fills out your...

Why Zapier Doesn't Use Gevent (Yet)

Rob Golding / January 10, 2016

At Zapier, we make a lot of outbound API requests. Almost 500 per second, to be exact. That means we spend a long time waiting for those APIs to get back to us—particularly if a popular service is experiencing issues. In fact, if you were to add up all...

Do Apps That Integrate With Zapier Have Lower Churn?

Christopher Peters / March 12, 2015

At Zapier, we like to test claims against facts.

With that in mind, we recently partnered with our friends at Typeform to validate the proclamation of the Zapier Developer Platform: "Make your app stickier than honey." That is, when an app integrates with Zapier (in effect, integrating with over 400...