First of all, What is an API?
Let’s quote the above linked article:
Abbreviation of application program interface, a set of routines, protocols, and tools for building software applications. A good API makes it easier to develop a program by providing all the building blocks. A programmer puts the blocks together.
Most operating environments, such as MS-Windows, provide an API so that programmers can write applications consistent with the operating environment. Although APIs are designed for programmers, they are ultimately good for users because they guarantee that all programs using a common API will have similar interfaces. This makes it easier for users to learn new programs.”
Oh ok, “What is ICQ” is not needed, every reader knows what it is 🙂
And what are Xtraz? (mostly) Web-based features for ICQ, like webcam support, games, ICQ Mail client, a Status Manager, voice chat, etc.
So the thing is that the ICQ Team announced in September 2004 the release of a Public Xtraz API so that every normal ICQ User can create his own features (just like MSN has plugins).
Unfortunately on March, 16th, 2005 they said they have no plans to release it anymore!
This is bad! Since right now, only business partners of ICQ have an API can can code features for ICQ. But I think the ICQ Team should do what they promised and release the public API for everyone!