As the days grow longer and summer takes full stage, many of us are flocking to patios and parks to engage in the time-honored tradition of grilling food. When it comes to cooking outdoors, the type of grills used span a spectrum from primitive to high tech. For some people a small campfire is all that's required for the perfect outdoor dining experience. For other people the preferred tool for outdoor cooking is a quad grill gas-powered stainless steel cooker with enough features to make an Iron Chef rust with envy.

An interesting off-shoot of outdoor cooking techniques is solar cooking, which combines primitive skills and modern ingenuity. At its most basic, solar cooking involves creating an "oven" that is placed in the sun and passively cooks the food it contains. It is simple to get started with solar cooking because a solar oven is something people can make themselves with inexpensive materials and a bit of effort. The appeal of simplicity, inexpensiveness and the ability to "do it yourself" has created a growing group of people who are making solar ovens themselves.
How all this relates to webmasters is that the webmaster community is also made up of a diverse group of people who use a variety of tools in a myriad of ways. Just like how within the outdoor cooking community there's a contingent of people creating their own solar ovens, the webmaster community has a subgroup of people creating and sharing their own tools. From our discussions with webmasters, we've consistently heard requests to open Webmaster Tools for third-party integration. The Webmaster Tools team has taken this request to heart and I'm happy to announce that we're now releasing an API for Webmaster Tools. The supported features in the first version of the Webmaster Tools API are the following:
  • Managing Sites
    • Retrieve a list of your sites in Webmaster Tools
    • Add your sites to Webmaster Tools
    • Verify your sites in Webmaster Tools
    • Remove your sites from Webmaster Tools
  • Working with Sitemaps
    • Retrieve a list of your submitted Sitemaps
    • Add Sitemaps to Webmaster Tools
    • Remove Sitemaps from Webmaster Tools

Although the current API offers a limited subset of all the functionality that Webmaster Tools provides, this is only the beginning. Get started with the Developer's Guide for the Webmaster Tools Data API to begin working with the API.

Webmasters... fire up your custom tools and get cooking!