RESTful Web Services

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"O'Reilly Media, Inc.", Dec 17, 2008 - Computers - 454 pages
19 Reviews
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"Every developer working with the Web needs to read this book." -- David Heinemeier Hansson, creator of the Rails framework

"RESTful Web Services finally provides a practical roadmap for constructing services that embrace the Web, instead of trying to route around it." -- Adam Trachtenberg, PHP author and EBay Web Services Evangelist

You've built web sites that can be used by humans. But can you also build web sites that are usable by machines? That's where the future lies, and that's what RESTful Web Services shows you how to do. The World Wide Web is the most popular distributed application in history, and Web services and mashups have turned it into a powerful distributed computing platform. But today's web service technologies have lost sight of the simplicity that made the Web successful. They don't work like the Web, and they're missing out on its advantages.

This book puts the "Web" back into web services. It shows how you can connect to the programmable web with the technologies you already use every day. The key is REST, the architectural style that drives the Web. This book:

  • Emphasizes the power of basic Web technologies -- the HTTP application protocol, the URI naming standard, and the XML markup language
  • Introduces the Resource-Oriented Architecture (ROA), a common-sense set of rules for designing RESTful web services
  • Shows how a RESTful design is simpler, more versatile, and more scalable than a design based on Remote Procedure Calls (RPC)
  • Includes real-world examples of RESTful web services, like Amazon's Simple Storage Service and the Atom Publishing Protocol
  • Discusses web service clients for popular programming languages
  • Shows how to implement RESTful services in three popular frameworks -- Ruby on Rails, Restlet (for Java), and Django (for Python)
  • Focuses on practical issues: how to design and implement RESTful web services and clients
This is the first book that applies the REST design philosophy to real web services. It sets down the best practices you need to make your design a success, and the techniques you need to turn your design into working code. You can harness the power of the Web for programmable applications: you just have to work with the Web instead of against it. This book shows you how.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - dvf1976 - LibraryThing

After creating a significant number of web services, I've come to appreciate standards that more closely resemble the web. Any time I have to use XML-RPC, I have to use libraries that are (at best ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - adulau - LibraryThing

The interesting part is the beginning clearly defining what's exactly a RESTful services. Some good points expressed regarding the simplicity of HTTP (the genius part of HTTP). The rest of the book is for the Ruby fan... Read full review

All 7 reviews »


Chapter 1 The Programmable Web and Its Inhabitants
Chapter 2 Writing Web Service Clients
Chapter 3 What Makes RESTful Services Different?
Chapter 4 The ResourceOriented Architecture
Chapter 5 Designing ReadOnly ResourceOriented Services
Chapter 6 Designing ReadWrite ResourceOriented Services
Chapter 7 A Service Implementation
Chapter 8 REST and ROA Best Practices
Chapter 10 The ResourceOriented Architecture Versus Big Web Services
Chapter 11 Ajax Applications as REST Clients
Chapter 12 Frameworks for RESTful Services
Appendix A Some Resources for REST and Some RESTful Resources
Appendix B The HTTP Response Code Top 42
Appendix C The HTTP Header Top Infinity

Chapter 9 The Building Blocks of Services

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