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If you are like me and try your best to keep up on industry news and trends, you may have caught some of the press on 12Sprints.com already. Last week there were a number of articles posted by PC World, CMSWire, New York Times, ReadWriteWeb and numerous other internet publications that talked about a new product we are working on called 12Sprints. The #12Sprints Twitter hashtag has also seen steady stream of posts in the last few days. Its been a pretty exciting week for those of us working on the project. If your not sure what I’m talking about try Googling 12Sprints news.

 

Probably the biggest reason why the press were all over the story was because the title of almost all the articles read something like this: “SAP set to release a Google Wave competitor”. In general I thought most of the articles were pretty acurate but the titles were a little off the mark.

 

We don’t like to think of 12sprints as a collaboration tool although it does have some collaborative functionality.  12sprints is part of a new product category called collaborative decision-making.  Collaborative decision-making provides tools that bring people together with the latest information and analysis or decision techniques to drive towards a particular outcome.  Unlike products in the market that offer general collaboration platforms like Microsoft SharePoint, Google Wave, or Salesforce Chatter, 12sprints is a specialized application for goal-oriented work that can be used in conjunction with any of these products.

 

There are a lot of places you can go to learn more about 12sprints, here are a list of a few places you might want to check out:

www.12sprints.com

www.sapweb20.com/blog/2009/11/sap%E2%80%99s-12sprints-collaborative-decision-making-prototype/

http://twitter.com/12sprints

 

The purpose of my blog today was to let the community know that we have an extensive set of APIs currently available for 12Sprints. The plan from the beginning was to build out the APIs in parallel with the product itself, and build on top of them where possible. Currently 12Sprints has two APIs: the Methods API, and the Invocation API.

 

For those of you who have had a chance to read about or get access to the 12Sprints  beta, you will understand that 12Sprints provides a set of business tools that allow you to collect information from your activity’s participants. Currently one of the most popular methods is our pro-con tool analysis tool, which allows your participants to enter their ‘pros’ and ‘cons’ on a specific idea or subject. With the methods API you can create your own business tools for use inside your 12Sprints activities. Currently you can create your Methods with either JavaScript or Flex code. Once you get used to our API, building a method is no different than building simple HTML/JavaScript or Flex applications. Once you get the hang if it really is quite easy.

 

The Invocation API is a REST based web service that allows you to call 12Sprints functions from your application. A common example would be where you want to add collaborative decision making features to an existing application. In that scenario you could simply add a button in your application that makes a series of web service calls that create a new decision activity, add some relevent content, add some business tools like pro-con analysis, and invite your collegues to participate. This entire workflow is available by making a series of web service calls.

 

For those of you who have followed my blog posts in the past, the Invocation API is not unlike the Explorer in the Cloud API that we currently have in Beta. Just like developers who were able to easily add a button to provide advanced analytics to their applications, you can now easily add collaborative decisioning to your application.

 

Please keep in mind, we are still in invite only beta, and we are missing a lot of the API features that are in our current backlog, but we are definitely getting there.

 

For those of you who have feedback on the 12Sprints API you can give them to us through the “Feedback” button in 12Sprints. I would love to hear from you.

 

If you would like an invite to the beta you can register at www.12sprints.com

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