Stack Exchange obviously has a complex API to meet the possible needs of its users, and it seems to require registering applications in order to use it.
All I'm looking for though is a simple way of getting the number of unread messages on my account.
(E.g. so I could be alerted without having to have an open SE web page.)
SEND: "how many unread messages for user=#1234 password=XXX ?" (in a more appropriate format)
RECEIVE: "3" (in any format that's possible to parse, and possibly with other data)
Is there such an interface (via HTTPS or telnet or whatever)?