New express

Last week was Google IO 2013.  I have to admit that although I have never attended Google IO, connecting with the keynotes and sessions via the web leaves me with a renewed sense of energy.  I have attended a significant number of other conferences and the positive, can-do attitude of the presenters goes a long way in my book.

Sometimes in the day-to-day and week-to-week routine of our jobs we can lose a bit of the enthusiasm that comes with learning something new.  Regardless of one's profession, continuing eduction in a variety of formats is a very good thing indeed.  All this and no jet-lag.

With Google IO fresh on my mind and the associated energy, I had a chance to play with a relatively new effort from Exadel now called RESTXpress.  This software interests me on a couple of different levels and I applaud their initiative in releasing it as free software but I would like to see it as open sourced as well.

If you have not yet seen this software, the video is worth watching.  While the video has a bit of a slow start if you are already familiar with the technologies which are leveraged, it's still a great illustration.  I have this opinion because during relatively long time I have been involved with web services (I started writing services before SOAP/WSDL was known) I still run into folks who do not understand web services and I think this can help.  

If one has a grasp of relational database theory, or at least SQL, a bit of an understanding of REST can be gained in ten minutes.  The concepts behind GET, POST, DELETE, and PUT may not be fully formed and perhaps the power of JSON and/or XML over the wire may not yet be fully appreciated, but the introduction to RESTExpress can fill a gap or two in conversations about web services.

If you're not familiar with REST it's definitely worth checking out.  If you are a seasoned web services developer, it's still worth a look and perhaps you have an immediate use for it as well.

After looking at RESTExpress briefly and having a couple of short conversations about it with colleagues, here are a few of wish list items:

  • consider OData (or odata4j)
  • WADLs
  • accept first record and batch size parameters
  • wrap returned lists in complex type to include total count
  • open source it
Check it out and thanks Exadel!! 
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