An engineer from Octopart asks about standardizing the format for partlists for easier automated processing and quotes. They are designing a new part information API and would like help with suggestions and ideas:
If we can all come up with a good general purpose structured data format, it could be used for interchange between EDA tools, inventory management software, lookup and order placement APIs, etc. One common anti-pattern we see is designers/purchasers blurring the line between part descriptions (“1k 0805 2% resistor”), manufacturer part numbers, and distributor SKUs. Certainly each has their place, and any of these individually or in combination is a valid line item that can be searched for, but not in the same data field please!
Continues below the fold. Via the forum.
We are designing our next iteration API over the next few months, any feedback on the existing one would be great. We have existing customers using the v2 API, so we will continue to support that interface as well for the foreseeable future. We have a number of rate-limiting measures in place to prevent what we see as abuse (scrapping our entire database of millions of parts), but certainly want to support use cases like checking for price updates on dozens or hundreds of parts in a reasonable time frame.
Anybody have a favorite existing interchange format to replace .csv? Something flexible enough to be used across octopart, upverter, solderpad, and potentially get sent off to contract manufacturers?