The Web API Design Guidelines for Happy Developers
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The Web API Design Guidelines for Happy Developers

A short pragmatic guide to build effective and funny Web APIs

About the Book

When developing a modern Web Application, it’s increasingly likely that you, as a developer, will need to use an API: be it a social network plugin API, an e-commerce checkout API, a Captcha, a Web Analytics suite. In today’s Web development APIs are ubiquitous.

But as you wandered through dozens of different APIs, you’ve certainly found out already that they’re not all born equal: for each API that is well thought, well documented, easy to understand and fun to use, there are dozens that are obscure and inconsistent, error-prone and tedious.

The goal of this ebook is to provide a set of guidelines through key points/tips on how to design Web APIs that are, at the same time: nice and sound, fun to use and logically consistent. We don’t like to call them REST, as we don’t want to introduce unneeded constraints in our guidelines. We prefer to call them Pragmatic Web APIs

About the Authors

Antonio Pintus
Antonio Pintus

Senior Software Engineer at Vivocha.

Co-founder and CTO of the Internet of Things company named Paraimpu.

Past experiences: 16+ years of experience as Technologist in the ICT Department at CRS4, where he contributed to national and international funded research projects.

His main activities and skills are in design and development of scalable Web software systems and APIs, including Internet of Things applications. He is author and co-author of several publications and scientific papers presented in national and international conferences.

He loves APIs, Javascript and Node.js. Amateur photographer and design lover.

Federico Pinna
Federico Pinna

Having written his first computer program at the age of nine, he's being developing software for over thirty years.

Co-founder and CTO of Vivocha, a startup providing a cloud based Online Engagement Platform to medium and large enterprises.

Over the past twenty years he's designed and developed countless protocol stacks and APIs, ranging from Voice Over IP and Computer Telephony Integration systems, to, more recently, secure instant messaging and WebRTC middlewares.

In 2007, he's awarded an international patent as the inventor of iSMIL, a real-time video editing system.

He loves programming languages and wandering off the beaten track to find new solutions.

Music lover, lifelong gamer.

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • About the Authors
  • Documentation
  • Resource Names and URL Design
  • API Base URL and Versioning
  • HTTP Methods
    • Create with POST
    • Read with GET
    • Update with PUT
    • Delete with… DELETE
    • Limitations of HTTP PUT e DELETE
    • Caching
    • Rate Limiting
  • Actions
  • Errors and Statuses in Responses
  • Data Formats
    • Dates and Time
  • Querying Resources
    • Pagination
    • Partial Responses
  • Security
    • Authentication and Authorization
  • Browser Same Origin Policy
  • Software Development Kits
  • Conclusions
  • And… one more tip
  • References

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