Today, we're publicly documenting the Google Visualization API's open-wire protocol, thus dramatically expanding the capabilities of this API beyond what had been available since we first launched in March of this year. Organizations can now expose their server-side data, such as in SQL databases and even in Excel spreadsheets, and display this data through visualizations from our growing directory. This flexibility makes it possible to connect easily almost any data source to a wealth of 40+ visualizations, including standard pie and line charts and complex heat maps and motion charts.

To make it even easier for developers to get started, we have documented an open-source Python library that enables any Python developer to quickly start using the API. What we find particularly cool about this library is that it also runs on Google's AppEngine. You don't even need to be an owner of your own servers to expose your data: You can place it on AppEngine and use the Visualization API to expose your data in meaningful, insightful ways in dashboards and reports. Expect to see additional server-side tools for the Visualization API in the near future.

Moreover, this week at the Dreamforce conference, Salesforce announced they've created tools, including code snippets and API harnesses, to make the Google Visualization API even easier to use. Salesforce customers can now quickly and easily add dashboards and custom reporting applications over their Salesforce data and publish these on any webpage. ISVs and BI firms such as Panorama and Conceptual Clarity, who are already marketing their powerful reporting tools over Google Spreadsheets using the Visualization API, now have access to Salesforce customers. The icing on the cake: since they use the Visualization API, they can address this new market without adding new code to their existing applications.

To learn more about how to implement your data store as a Visualization API data source, by checking out our documentation.