Monday, September 17, 2007

Trends 2007: REST

Much has been written about REST, the architectural style for distributed, networked applications, described by Roy Fielding. My first exposure to the concept was in from Paul Prescod's article published in 2002: Second Generation Web Services. After reading that piece, I "got it", and I've been an advocate ever since. Fast forward to 2007, and we have the the publication of "R&R" -- Richardson and Ruby's, "Restful Web Services". Along the way we have Ruby on Rails embracing REST along with Microsoft, Google, and others.

There has been a good bit of REST-theory and debate on the net, but also note that Roy Fielding is scheduled to provide some perspective at the next ApacheCon with the talk "A Little REST and Relaxation".

If you want to get beyond the theory and see real-world REST semantics, principles, and working code, you need go no further than the Atom Publishing Protocol.

What does it all mean? REST is at this point the default method for doing real "web services" -- any modern API is typically RESTful to some degree. Traditional IT shops and enterprise vendors should take heed and begin to adopt these methods.

Here's my linkdump on REST (maintaining these is what prompted me to use

(thanks to Sam Ruby for the REST logo)

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