Thursday 11 a.m.–11:50 a.m.

REST: It's not just for servers

Mark Lavin

Audience level:



Have you ever written or used an API wrapper for a webservice? REST is a client-server architecture model and building the server is only half of the challenge. This talk will walk through some of the challenges of building a REST client, describe some best practices and some patterns to avoid, and discuss how we can all work to build better APIs for an open web.


Many popular services have APIs marketed as RESTful. This term is used with varying degrees of truth. While some services provide and maintain API client wrappers in various programming languages, more often this falls on the larger open source community. Making these useful libraries and keeping them up to date with the latest API changes has its problems and challenges. Some of the problems have to do with the constraints of REST but many come from the rarely implemented and often misunderstood HATEOAS (Hypermedia as the Engine of Application State) principles. This talk will walk through these challenges with examples of the good and bad of what is out there on the client and server side. In the end I hope this talk will inspire API developers on both sides (client and server) to consider how they can work better together. After all what’s a REST server without a client?