Zend eases API development with Apigility

The PHP-based Apigility handles many of the routine tasks involved in building an API

Streamlining a development process that typically involves many steps, Zend has released a cross-platform, open-source package for building application programming interfaces that can be used for sharing data and functionality across different applications.

"Creating APIs are inherently difficult. There is no one standard out there to make them easy to do. You have to do a lot of work in order to understand how APIs work and what you want to do in order to expose them," said Matthew Weier O'Phinney, project lead for Apigility.

Apigility is designed to streamline many of these tasks in a single workflow, Weier O'Phinney said.

Apigility joins Zend's set of PHP-centric Web and mobile application development tools, including Zend Studio and the Zend Framework.

Zend first launched the Apigility as an open-source project last October, and was pleasantly surprised by its reception -- thousands of developers have already downloaded early builds and the company has gotten contributions and feedback for code improvements.

It is built on PHP, though it does not require connecting programs to be built in that language."You can use any code you want. We give you a workflow to describe the API and an engine to run it on. You take whatever code you have and plug it in there and deliver it as an API," Weier O'Phinney said.

An API-based architecture would allow organizations to expose an application's data and functionality, so it can be used by other applications or even components within a single system. For instance, a mobile application could make an API call to a back-end cloud service for data, reducing the work it would take tightly integrate the two services.

Apigility takes care of many of the chores required to set up an API, including the thorny tasks of error handling, data validation, and setting up authentication.

Developers may also be pleased in that it provides a way to support multiple versions of an API, another typical headache for API maintainers. Apigility does content negotiation, or the process of fitting the data being delivered to the specific form factor delivering the data. It also provides an workspace to document APIs.

API calls can be done through either the widely used Web REST (Representational state transfer) protocol, or through the more traditional RPC (remote procedure call) method. Data is delivered in JSON (JavaScript Object Notation), a data format natively recognized by JavaScript and most other Web-centric programming languages.

Joab Jackson covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Joab on Twitter at @Joab_Jackson. Joab's e-mail address is Joab_Jackson@idg.com

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Development toolsapplication developmentWeb services developmentzendsoftware

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Joab Jackson

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?