Note: In our previous article, we went over the basics of APIs in the translation industry. We recommend you check that article before reading on.
What is TAPICC?
The Translation API Cases and Classes (TAPICC) initiative of GALA aims to create an open-source, pre-standardization model to address challenges related to the profusion of proprietary APIs in the translation and localization sector. TAPICC aims to create an API that provides a uniform way of transmitting information about a project. TAPICC made great progress in establishing task types, a job description and suggesting an API that companies can freely use to transfer their data.
You might get the impression that TAPICC will become the single API and if you implement a TAPICC interface, you won’t need to implement anything else. That would really fantastic, but bear in mind that TAPICC does not take over internal APIs, but only the place of the documented APIs.
Right now, we are only aware of two language service providers that provided documented APIs for their vendors: Moravia and Transline. While TAPICC may give the creation of documented APIs a boost, it most likely won’t be powerful enough to represent the importance of providing documented APIs for vendors – that’s simply a business decision. If CEOs and IT managers do not find it important to allocate resources to make the life of their vendors easier, there won’t be a documented API.
Another aspect worth mentioning is that TAPICC is mainly focused on transferring content located in content management systems (CMS) to translation management systems (TMS), rather than from vendor portals to business management systems (BMS).
BeLazy is not content-focused: we leave that to our friends at Xillio, simply because we can’t be everything to everyone even if we are a middleware.
Due to its focus on content, the creators of TAPICC are quite concerned about transferring money-related information through TAPICC and did not include such information in the API description. If this does not change, it will not be suitable to transfer project requests from vendor portals to business management systems.
While we are very supportive of TAPICC (such an initiative could save us a significant amount of investment) we still regard it will be just another connection type until it becomes a real-life scenario.
Now let’s imagine that you have your own proprietary business management system. You believe that automation could be beneficial for your company but choose to build your own solution following TAPICC standards to implementing a readily-available technology such as BeLazy. Before you do so, consider the following:
It is an open-source initiative, which everyone is allowed to adopt or not.
It is a private company. Its entire business model is focused on making business-relevant integrations — and keep maintaining them.
If you develop a single TAPICC integration, it is very unlikely that you will be able to support all your customers’ systems at once, simply because your customers will need to change or implement APIs based on TAPICC first.
BEST POSSIBLE SCENARIO
If you implement BeLazy’s APIs now to make a first step in integration, you’re making the right move towards connectivity. Then if TAPICC manages to gain momentum, you can simply replace the integration code. The error handling you will have written won’t be wasted development, and it will be simply much faster to create a TAPICC integration than if you went from scratch.
BeLazy was created to deliver the best business and technical solution for implementing automation between vendor portals and business management systems – Right now, we believe we are the best at doing so.
We pool resources to finance expensive development and maintenance effort, as well as liaise with all the different vendor portal owners.
We are aware that much of our competition is indeed proprietary developments. However, the evidence speaks for itself: before launching BeLazy we interviewed dozens of translations companies. Only three of them had successfully built integrations, but not even one had more than five working integrations. This led us to conclude that developing this kind of solutions in-house, does not really make sense for language service providers.
BeLazy aims to make such integrations possible for translation companies of any sizes. Given our focus, we are also able to represent the supply chain towards larger language companies and end clients.