Building Hypermedia APIs with HTML5 and Node
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: November 2011
Pages: 244

With this concise book, you’ll learn the art of building hypermedia APIs that don’t simply run on the Web, but that actually exist in the Web. You’ll start with the general principles and technologies behind this architectural approach, and then dive hands-on into three fully-functional API examples.

Too many APIs rely on concepts rooted in desktop and local area network patterns that don’t scale well—costly solutions that are difficult to maintain over time. This book shows system architects and web developers how to design and implement human- and machine-readable web services that remain stable and flexible as they scale.

  • Learn the H-Factors for representing application metadata across all media types and formats
  • Understand the four basic design elements for authoring hypermedia types
  • Convert a simple read-only XML-based media type into a successful API design
  • Examine the challenges and advantages of designing a hypermedia type with JSON
  • Use HTML5’s rich set of hypermedia controls in the API design process
  • Learn the details of documenting, publishing, and registering media type designs and link-relation types
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oreillyBuilding Hypermedia APIs with HTML5 and Node
 
3.8

(based on 4 reviews)

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75%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

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      • Expert (4)
      • Intermediate (3)
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      Reviewed by 4 customers

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      3.0

      Good theory for architects

      By Michiel van Otegem

      from Landsmeer, Netherlands

      About Me Software architect

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Concise
      • Easy to understand

      Cons

      • Lengthy examples
      • Too basic

      Best Uses

      • Expert
      • Intermediate

      Comments about oreilly Building Hypermedia APIs with HTML5 and Node:

      Building Hypermedia APIs with HTML5 and Node (Mike Amundsen; O'Reilly Media) is an interesting little book. It covers designing an online system that operates well in a browser, but works equally well when talking to from another type of application, which also has positive impact on automated testing. The strength of this book is absolutely the design theory, which is explained very well. The theory applies to pretty much any web development platform, which is where the weakness of the book comes in. If you are not an HTML5 or Node developer, and many of us aren't, reading through the practical part of the book is somewhat tedious. That said, the book is only 244 pages, and the theory is an easy read. That means that if you are only interested in that you can get through pretty quickly. The examples in itself are simple, but already add up to quite a bit of code you need to wade through. Understanding all that's going on takes a while.

      (3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      Great ideas, Code problems

      By malandrew

      from San Francisco, CA

      About Me Designer, Developer, Maker

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Cutting-edge
      • New concepts

      Cons

      • Overly wordy in places
      • Source-code Issues

      Best Uses

      • Expert
      • Intermediate

      Comments about oreilly Building Hypermedia APIs with HTML5 and Node:

      I think this book accomplishes the author's goals in that it presents some very worthwhile ideas about hypermedia APIs to a broader audience. The content, especially with regard to the most common type of API today,HTTP+JSON, is cutting edge stuff. I fully expect a lot of the ideas in this book to start showing up in more places. They are important ideas that will improve the web long term by promoting links/edges in places where links and edges are not yet common (e.g. HTTP+JSON RESTful APIs)

      With that in mind, this book is more academic than practical and can get overly wordy in places. If you have already designed an API, this is a great book to read. If you have not and your interest is HTTP+JSON, you may be better off learning by example from some well designed APIs like Stripe's API.

      While the ideas are great, this book really falls short on the code. The source code used in the book is supposedly on the author's site, but I could not not find it anywhere. TBH, in this day and age, every book should have a github repo that readers can fork/clone. There is no excuse for not having this these days. This is the second book from O'Reilly where source code and repository issues spoilt the book. O'Reilly really should have a technical editor go through and make sure all code is available and executable before the book is published. A Github repo would make it very easy to provide the code in a way where the community can be leveraged to solve problems before printing.

      On top of not having code easy to get to, I suspect that several of the examples may actually be pseudo code masquerading as executable code instead of real executable code. The code communicates the ideas, but I'm almost certain they'd result in nextTick() errors.

      If you are an intermediate to advanced practitioner in API design and want to know where APIs are probably headed, pick this book up. If you are new to APIs or looking for something practical today, start elsewhere.

      (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      3.0

      Good information but poorly presented

      By IslandGirl

      from Seattle, WA

      About Me Developer

      Pros

      • Interesting ideas

      Cons

      • Difficult to understand
      • Poorly presented
      • Too many errors

      Best Uses

      • Expert
      • Reference not learning

      Comments about oreilly Building Hypermedia APIs with HTML5 and Node:

      I think this book contains some good information, however it is presented poorly. The reader should be an expert in web technologies, as the examples do not have detailed explanations.

      The chapters that present the built-out examples read more like manuals than a book. If you have a specific interest in the types of examples the author is presenting and are already an expert in HTML, JSON or XML and Node, then this may be helpful. However, if you are intermediate or new to these technologies you will be lost quickly.

      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Great at explaining hypermedia APIs

      By Hypermedia Reviewer

      from Europe

      About Me Developer, Sys Admin

      Pros

      • Concise
      • Easy to understand
      • Helpful examples
      • Well-written

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Expert
        • Intermediate
        • Novice
        • Student

        Comments about oreilly Building Hypermedia APIs with HTML5 and Node:

        This is a great book for learning how to design and implement Hypermedia APIs regardless of what technologies one chooses to use. The examples use Node.js and CouchDB but that is not the focus of the book; the title is a bit unfortunate in this respect.

        Regardless of what server-side and client-side technology you use, read this book if you want to design and implement discoverable APIs (RESTful or not).

        Also, it is worth checking this presentation: http://oredev.org/2010/sessions/hypermedia-apis

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