news The government has implemented a ‘Government as an API’ service that is aimed to provide more powerful and consistent use of digital content across multiple services.
The government said that as agencies need to adapt and change to keep up with the rapidly evolving digital landscape, the need to “discover, repurpose and share or consume” government content in real time is greater than ever before.
“Until now, sharing content and establishing a ‘single source of truth’ has been hampered by the complexities of ensuring content is updated when re-used by other sites or systems,” according to a government statement.
The new omni-channel service is able to pull and reuse content from other sites and systems external to the govCMS platform via an API (application programming interface).
Once in the Content Hub, the system “normalises” all content to allow it to be used across a number of different applications, and to adhere to standard content models. Users can also export and use digital content or allow it to be reused by third parties via API.
Effectively, the user’s piece of content becomes the “single source of truth”, the statement said.
When content is edited, the changes are automatically pushed through to every site and system using the data in “near real time”.
Built using Acquia Content Hub technology, the API In API Out system offers a variety of uses and advantages, the government said.
Firstly it is omni-channel, meaning users can publish “approved, trusted content” just once across many channels, such as mobile, web, kiosks, call-centre knowledge bases and shop-front customer service displays. Content is also more user focused, since it can be merged from knowledge sources across many agencies and be presented through “topic-based sites or entry points”.
Additionally, migration of data is boosted, as systems integrators can move content via API from a wide variety of non-Drupal (an open-source content management system) sites to the Content Hub where it is normalised before delivery to govCMS sites.
The API eases syndication of government content to other websites too, in theory ensuring content is always up to date and consistent across the board. Content can also be published to a number of third-party sites simultaneously.
The ‘Government as an API’ service further allows the private or non-profit sectors access to relevant government content, where it can be reused or repackaged in various ways.