Teaching best practices to Design, Build, Secure and Monitor APIs

In this blog, I want to share my experience after having created many APIs using different approaches and technologies. I am going to encapsulate a simple process that will help you construct APIs, starting from scratch with an idea or requirement and move it all along to a happy consumption.

The best part of APIs is that they are microservices enablers, which implies that they are not technology prescriptive, so in this blog you will see that your APIs can be implemented using any technology or programming language.

I decided to use “Jokes” as the vehicle to explain the APIs construction best practices, mainly because jokes are a simple concept that anyone can relate to, but also because I want you to feel compelled to consume these APIs and by doing so, get a laugh or two.

My original idea with jokes is to:

  1. Get a random joke.
  2. Translate the joke to any language.
  3. Share the original or the translated joke with a friend via SMS.

This is the high-level view of how our end solution will look like:

Continue reading “Teaching best practices to Design, Build, Secure and Monitor APIs”

Apiary designed APIs tested using Dredd

APIs are becoming the window to the digital assets of the modern business. Well documented, well governed and easy to use APIs are key to their successful uptake, longevity and associated business success. Yes, I did say well documented. In this instance I am talking about the documentation required to describe the APIs capabilities in a manner that is meaningful for your ultimate audience, the “API Consumers”, however it will also provide the template for the API Developer to develop their code from. In the modern business climate, we probably don’t want to produce War and Peace, we simply want to take a minimum viable approach to our API documentation. But where would I find a capability that will simplify our task as API Designers, capture the design documentation for our APIs, allow us to do some initialise testing to validate the usefulness of our design before any code is cut, and also have the documentation ready for consumption by team members and interested parties using a standards based approach. Where indeed ! Look no further than Apiary.io. Continue reading “Apiary designed APIs tested using Dredd”

Oracle IoT – Working with Bosch Devices

How to use the Bosch XDK with the Oracle IoT cloud service.

Introduction

As I continue to work with various IoT vendors to see how they could be used with the Oracle IoT cloud service, I came across one of these nice little Bosch XDK kits.

bosch-xdk

This is a demo kit to show off the many Bosch sensors available and give people an environment for prototyping.  Here are some of the built-in sensors:XDK Sensors

The device has built-in wifi and Bluetooth LE.

My goal was to get this to periodically send sensor data into the IoT cloud service and make it easy for others to do the same.

Continue reading “Oracle IoT – Working with Bosch Devices”

Exploring GitHub Docker Hub and OCCS Part 4

In my previous post in this series I covered linking GitHub and DockerHub and configuring the environment such that a build of a Docker image was triggered on updates to GitHub. In this final post of the series I will take you through the steps to pull the image from Docker Hub into OCCS in order to run the application. It should be noted that the image built on Docker Hub in my example is only the web tier that contains my Node.js project (APIs and SwaggerUI). The MongoDB component of my OCCS Stack is pulled directly from Docker Hub when my Stack containing the Web Tier and Database Tier services is deployed to OCCS. Continue reading “Exploring GitHub Docker Hub and OCCS Part 4”

Exploring GitHub, DockerHub and OCCS Part 2

In my previous post I detailed how I Dockerised the MedRec app. In this post I will show how I added MongoDB and defined a stack using Docker-Compose.

Add MongoDB layer using Docker-Compose

According to the official docker documentation ;

“Compose is a tool for defining and running multi-container Docker applications. With Compose, you use a Compose file to configure your application’s services. Then, using a single command, you create and start all the services from your configuration. ”

A single command to create and start all the services in a configuration sounded pretty good to me. I definitely was keen on exploring docker-compose.

Add a docker-compose.yml file

Having proved that my web application runs up, I now need to address the persistence layer. The above Dockerfile contains the steps to create the required runtime platform for my node app, and installs the node application and package dependences (as specified in the package.json) file by doing the npm install. However if I tried to do a GET or a PUT my app will fail as it won’t find a MongoDB inside my container. I therefore still need a MongoDB somewhere in my environment to hold my application data. Continue reading “Exploring GitHub, DockerHub and OCCS Part 2”

Exploring GitHub Docker Hub and OCCS Part 1

In my previous post in this series I provided an Introduction describing the high level steps I planned to take.
In this post I will walk through the detailed steps to Dockerise the MedRec application.

Dockerise the MedRec APIs

Git clone the project repository

I used my Windows Surface Pro-4 with Oracle VM Virtual Box installed to host my development VM. I managed to source a VBox image that already had Ubuntu 16.04 and Docker installed so that helped get me started. In my development environment on my laptop, I created a directory under my home directory named gitprojects.
I cd into that directory.

cd gitprojects
Continue reading “Exploring GitHub Docker Hub and OCCS Part 1”

Exploring GitHub, DockerHub and OCCS – Introduction

As part of our MedRec API playpen initiative we had already developed some REST API’s using Node.js and leveraged MongoDB running on Oracle IaaS as the persistence layer. . This post describes what I did to dockerise the MedRec API application and eventually run it on the Oracle Container Cloud Service (OCCS).

The APIs have already been made available for interested parties to interact with via SwaggerUI. Of course developers could develop their own code (or any REST client) to interact with them. As a team we used a combination of the Oracle Developer Cloud Service (Git repository, Issue Tracker, Build Server etc) and also the public GitHub to provide public access to our project code. As the source code for the Node.js project containing the API’s was pushed to GitHub I simply did a clone of the Node application code in order to download and run it locally (MedRec API tutorials available here).

The application ran well enough on my local laptop which running Ubuntu 16.04, however I really wanted to be able to try to run the app and MongoDB as a Docker image/stack on my laptop. After I had the application successfully “Dockerised”, then I planned to deploy my application stack to the Oracle Container Cloud Service. I also wanted to explore the use of the GitHub / Docker Hub integration to build my image on Docker Hub, and then from within the Oracle Container Cloud Service (OCCS). With the application image available on Docker Hub, I could then pull my image from that source in order to run it up on OCCS.

A good blog can really help bring you up to speed quickly and help overcome inertia to get you started and I would like to acknowledge the help that Mauricio Payetta’s blog provided me.

In this series of blog posts I plan to retrace what I did during my self-learning. Continue reading “Exploring GitHub, DockerHub and OCCS – Introduction”