Can any technically astute person help me?

Discussion in 'Trading Software' started by sputdr, Mar 10, 2006.

  1. Can somebody without getting too technical explain what fix and api are and how they fit into a trading firm like Interactive Brokers?

    Thanks very much.
  2. Choad


  3. If you don't know what an API or the FIX protocol is, you don't need to worry about them. They are for programmers or software developers.

    API is the chunk of code which allows the IB platform to communicate with other software.

    FIX, I believe is an order entry protocol which is a specific way in which an order entry application would communicate with a broker or exchange. I may not be 100% exact on this, but you get the idea.
  4. So it's more or less a conduit between IB and the end user to transmit messages through their software over to IB?
  5. It's for custom made software, in no way is it necessary to use an API for most traders.

    Perhaps I could be more insightful if you told us why you want to know.
  6. I was just curious because I've seen it on some trading sights and was interested as to what it was.

    Thanks everyone for all your help.
  7. kjsnow25


    API is in effect an interface; nothing more if you're not a programmer. For some busineses, though, the API is the entire programmed out version of what they do; it is what separates one weakly programmed bunch of code from a far superior pile of code and programmers.

    It is accessed by a GUI, and you can connect via FIX. Effectively, treat that as looking at a front end (a GUI) connecting to an API (via a normal proptocal or junction, even) and doing that, as well as going out to the markets/ECN's via FIX. It just sounds difficult.

    It's not.