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Getting Started

There are five steps in the process:

  1. Get an application ID. Each API call must include an application ID. This allows Yahoo! to limit, by IP address, the number of calls made in a 24-hour period to all web services. This ID can be obtained freely (free Yahoo! membership registration is required).
  2. Bookmark the main documentation page. The documentation provides links to specific information about each parameter for constructing valid REST queries as well as each response field.
  3. Download the software development kit (SDK). The SDK includes BSD licensed examples provided by Yahoo! in both .tar (UNIX) and .zip (Windows) formats, providing sample code in Perl, PHP, Python, Java, JavaScript, and Flash. The application list page provides additional language APIs from third parties in .NET, C#, Visual Basic .NET, ASP, Ruby, REBOL, and PHP 5, with source code from and provided by third-party developers. Because the application page is in Wiki format, developers can effortlessly edit the page and add their own applications to the page. The application page also provides many real-world examples of how other developers are using these web services.
  4. Evaluate and review the service APIs. The service APIs are broken into five primary categories:
    • Image search is used for searching and returning images.
    • Local search finds businesses near a specified location by city, state, ZIP code, or latitude and longitude.
    • News search scans the Internet for news stories.
    • Video search is used for searching and returning video clips.
    • Web search accesses the Yahoo! search results for web pages.
  5. Choose the web service(s) needed for the application. Depending on what type of application you're building, one or more web services might be needed.

A few important things to keep in mind when designing your application:

  • Most web services allow no more than the first 1,000 results.
  • Yahoo! limits the aggregate number of queries across all web services to 5,000 per application ID.
  • To save on requerying the same data over a short period of time (when the data wouldn't be changing), consider using a cache of previous queries.
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