Insights

Web browser as a test of API RESTy-ness level


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I have made the argument that we should be able to explore our API using a humble browser. Our criteria for this is below. First setup your browser of choice with headers and a renderer for the API. I use both Firefox and Chrome. Unfortunately, they both still need tweeks!

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REST clients as antipattern


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There is a current anti-pattern occurring in implementing hypermedia APIs. That “REST” clients must be coded into the browser—for example, as a plugin specific to the media type. It’s an optimisation (and optimisations are needed but not as the baseline). The anti-pattern is not the client per se but rather the server. The client needs to compensate for the server not being RESTful—so you put “more REST” into the client. Based on this insight, the generic browser is therefore a perfect client to start measuring the REST level of the server that the API wants to support. If that is all perfectly clear go see our top ten practical ways to measure how well your API is going. Otherwise, let expand out a little more.

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