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API (Application Program Interface) - Definition

API is an abbreviation for Application Program Interface, although it is sometimes referred to as an Application Programming Interface. An API is a set of commands, functions, and protocols, which programmers can use when building software for a specific operating system. The API allows programmers to use predefined functions to interact with the operating system, instead of writing them from scratch. APIs are also used by video game consoles and other hardware devices that can run software programs.

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