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Build APIs You Won't Hate


Web development books


Phil Sturgeon



Release date

February 2014

Sales ranking

Week: Not ranked All time: 339


May 25, 2015
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Dave Smith
Based on the Representational State Transfer (REST) architecture style and the principles of Test Driven Development (TDD), Build API's You Won't Hate, takes you step by step through the API development cycle.

Examples are provided in multiple programming languages. Recommendations for tools you will need and examples on how to use them are given.

The style of this book is, how you can do it followed by how you should do it, in keeping with the concept that the author, Philip Sturgeon, is passing on his years of experience to help you avoid common pitfalls.

Chapter 1 - Useful Database Seeding. This chapter gives the reader important information on, and the tools you can use, to quickly seed your database with test data. It demonstrates the, how to not get fired from your job principle quite effectively.

Chapter 2 - Planning and Creating Endpoints. What are they and how they are used in a RESTful API design. This chapter lays out the fundamental theory and practical examples to start designing an API that does the work you need it to do.

Chapter 3 - Input and Output Theory. This chapter discusses how you will receive requests and return responses. It guides the reader through possible format choices to help pick the one that best works for their needs.

Chapter 4 - Status Codes, Errors and Messages. A proper request gets a proper response, but what do you do when something goes wrong? This chapter dives into the best practices and standards for reading, managing and notifying users of your API when errors occur.

Chapter 5 - Endpoint Testing. Based on the principles of Test Driven Development, this chapter will help you select and set up the tools you will need to test every aspect of your API as you develop it.

Chapter 6 - Outputting Data. In this chapter you move from theory to practical application with instructions on building the controllers for your endpoints.

Chapter 7 - Data Relationships. This chapter provides a list of popular approaches for delivering related data to your users with an emphasis on the desires of the recipient.

Chapter 8 - Debugging. As part of Test Driven Development, you will need to work with requests and responses in a controllable way to find problems in your API. This chapter covers debugging methods including debugging from the command line, browser and network.

Chapter 9 - Authentication. If you need to verify who is making a request and that they are authorized to receive the requested data, then this chapter is a must read. It provides descriptions of different authentication methods, however focusing mainly on implementation using OAuth 2.0.

Chapter 10 - Pagination. This chapter will help you pick an approach to split up your data and reduce response sizes.

Chapter 11 - Documentation. The basic concept here is that if you want someone to use your API, you have to show them how. You can do this by hand, or use the different tools presented in this chapter to automate the whole process.

Chapter 12 - HATEOAS, however you want to pronounce it, this chapter stresses the importance of hypertext linking in your API and some best practices for implementation.

Chapter 13 - API Versioning. This chapter discusses the pros and cons of popular methods for deploying new versions of your API and suggestions on how to upset the fewest users as possible. This is the, Build API's your Users won't Hate, chapter.

So you want to build an API, or perhaps your boss is making you since you are the IT person? If you want to build one that you, or your boss, won't hate, then this is the book for you.

Navigating the world of network services can be a daunting task for the uninitiated. This publication, Build API's You Won't Hate, gives clear and detailed instructions on how to build a REST compliant API, start to finish, and guides you through the pitfalls you should avoid. I would recommend it for any API developer at any level.

If you prefer reading it in your mother language, the good news is that at the time of this writing, the book is already translated into Portuguese, Turkish, Italian and French.
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