Commentary and examples of using the APIs (Application Programming Interface) for software like CiviCRM, MediaWiki, Drupal and web services. Both API documentation and API tools. OS and Internet API references.
Application Programming Interface (API) is the information about the exposed or 'public' variables, methods and objects or classes that a system makes available to the developer who wishes to interface with the system programmatically. If you make an API, documenting the API is a critical software development function. In documentation terms, the API must almost be treated like a separate piece of software within or "attached" to the main program.
Programming APIs[edit | edit source]
SWIG wp:Swig (Executive Summary) helps application developers create an API. Several open source projects leverage SWIG, such as Subversion, wxPython and wxWindows. In turn, other developers can enhance these generic APIs to customize them for a particular programming language. For example Python developers can use pySVN while work is underway to expand the PHP interface. See more in the Subversion manual http://svnbook.red-bean.com/nightly/en/svn-book.html#svn.developer.usingapi
Resources[edit | edit source]
- http://gotapi.com publishes several API references for everything from HTML and CSS to DocBook and Drupal. This organized list of API references also features fast, as-you-type search.
- Some other documentation resources:
MediaWiki API[edit | edit source]
MediaWiki has a strong action API (also called the web service API) which has it's endpoint at api.php. See the docs at https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/API:Main_page
Similarly, there is a Module:Sandbox for testing Lua scripts
Example Questions[edit | edit source]
Here are some example requests to the API
- https://freephile.org/w/api.php?action=query&meta=siteinfo&siprop=extensions With no 'format' argument, you will get a "pretty" HTML output that you can read in your browser.
- https://freephile.org/w/api.php?action=query&meta=siteinfo&siprop=extensions&format=json With *json* explicitly requested as the format, you can get values suitable for actual programming.
Developer Tools[edit | edit source]
Among other tools, you're going to need to look at HTTP requests and responses to develop web services using APIs. So, check out tools like Wireshark (https://www.wireshark.org/), the Network Monitor in Developer Tools for Firefox, or Chrome Developer Tools
Integrators[edit | edit source]
- The "Live HTTP Headers" add-on still exists, but that is no longer neccessary given the development of the core features of the in-browser developer tools