Open Registration API

In our last post we talked about Teamwork and the “Strength of the Pack”. The purpose of that post was to provide the context of why we are continuing to work on our Open API – a very technical topic.

In simple terms, an API is how two programs work together.  When we exchange participant or results information with timing systems like RunScore and Race Director it is done via an API.

Registration APIThe Open API, and our recent release of the Registration portion, is all about making it simple for others to work with us to make life better for race directors, timers and runners. With the pace of technology moving faster, no single company can cover everything a race needs. It is far more powerful to bring a team of best of breed solutions to bear. It also helps to avoid vendor lock-in, which keeps everyone on their toes and moving forward!

Mobile Race Registration
Mobile Race Registration

The Registration API allows other programs to use RunSignUp to process a registration. This means that new mobile app companies can create their own custom registration User Interface for a race. A company that focuses on Results today could add registration much more easily and take advantage of the RunSignUp back end services without having to replicate all of that.  Large timers could create their own mobile registration system. Large race businesses with multiple events across multiple cities with a need to create their own brand and leverage their own database of users could create their own Web and Mobile user experience that matches their brand. In essence, this takes the power of the Widget to the next level.

To help people get started, we have created two open source projects – an iPhone/iPad native app and a PHP web app. See an earlier blog on the Mobile App and see some screen shots below on the PHP web app.

White Label Registration via API

RunSignUp Releases Open Running API

Open Running API allows various running systems to work together, including Registration, Timing and Results systems

Moorestown, NJ – September 7, 2012 – RunSignUp, the leading innovator of online tools for Races and Running Clubs, today announced the availability of the Open Running API.  This provides a simple, modern way for Registration, Race Listing, Timing, and Results systems to work together – making life simpler for timers and race directors.

The API can be found at www.RunSignUp.com/API.  It is released under the Apache Open Source license, allowing anyone to freely use it.  There is a complete set of documentation as well as a nice “Try It” feature for developers to experiment and understand this.  Open source code examples are posted at https://github.com/RunSignUp-Team/OpenSource.  We have also open sourced our iPhone app for Mobile Timing to show a real world use case at https://github.com/RunSignUp-Team/RunSignUp-Mobile.

“We are trying to do two things with our Open Running API,” said Bob Bickel, founder of RunSignUp.  “First, we want to make it simpler for race directors and timers to use various tools from different vendors to serve runners better.  Second, we want to encourage a new wave of innovation for Mobile and Cloud technology.  The best way to do this is in an open and free way.”

There are three initial target areas for the API:

  • Participant Sharing.  This has been successfully deployed in The Race Director and RunScore, the two leading timing systems.  Timers can now easily download participants from RunSignUp with a simple click of the button in either of these pervasive timing tools.
  • Results Sharing.  This is a new API that we are working with other vendors to make results more available to runners in a fast and efficient manner.
  • Race Listings.  This API makes it simple for running related sites to request and post races.  This has been successfully used at RunSignUp affiliates like RunningintheUSA.com.

“We worked with RunSignUp to make it simple for our Timers to download participants,” said Roger Bradshaw, founder of The Race Director.  “We look forward to working with them on their new Results API to get results to runners as quickly and easily as possible.”

“We want to make it easy for our Timers to download participants from the major registration systems like Active.com, RaceIt and RunSignUp,” said Alan Jones, author of RunScore.  “The new Results Sharing API is the first of it’s kind and we are happy RunSignUp is making it open so others can use it.  This will make it easier for timers to post results to runners quickly.”

“RunSignUp has emerged as a real innovator in the running community,” said Bill Flaws, founder of RunningintheUSA.com.  “We have been working closely with them for over two years now on how to make races easier to find and more accessible to runners.”

The Open Running API is designed to expand.  By using Github, RunSignUp is creating an open environment for other vendors to take the code and expand in any way they would like.

About RunSignUp

RunSignUp is the leading innovator of online tools for Races and Running Clubs.  Services include RunSignUp for race registration, RunSignUp Clubs to enable membership management, and RunSignUp Sites for creating free websites for any running related organization.  Over 1,000 race directors, timers, and running club officers use these services today.  Services are free except for processing fees when conducting monetary transactions like race registration or club membership renewals.  RunSignUp is founded by runners for runners, using technical capabilities to bring the power of cloud computing to benefit the running community.