API Developer Weekly Newsletter
Hundreds if not thousand of websites talk about APIs, I rely on James Higginbotham’s newsletter to stay up to date about what is happening in the API space thanks to his weekly selection of great posts.
API Handyman wouldn’t exist without the API Evangelist. It’s always a pleasure to read Kin Lane’s views on the API space. This site is a hyper-mega-huge source of information about ALL aspects of APIs from API definitions to monetization and governance and dozens of other topics.
I started this project with a simple API Design Guidelines list in mind and ended with a fully analyzed collection of API design guidelines. I created it for others but I use it myself too. When I wonder how to handle some API design matters, I select the related topic and read how others handle it. To be honest, it needs some refresh, it is a real pain to update and maintain and could be more user friendly; that’s on my todo list.
Github Actions allows to create workflows right in your Github repositories. I use them to manage the apihandyman.io blog build and (scheduled) publication.
A CURL cousin that I often use then demoing API calls on the command line. I find it’s input and output capabilities more convenient than CURL’s to showcase how HTTP API work.
Ever wanted to quickly find, extract or modify data coming from some JSON documents on the command line? JQ is the tool you’re looking for. I use it every time I need to transform, modify or extract some properties from an API’s response or analyze OpenAPI specification JSON files during my API reviews.
Jekyll is a static site generator powered by Ruby, Markdown and Liquid that I use the the apihandyman.io blog and the apistylebook.com website.
Net API Events
Thanks to Matthew Reinbold’s Net API events, I stay up to date regarding upcoming API related conferences.
Net API Notes Newsletter
I always read Matthew Reinbold’s Net API Notes Newsletter with delight. It’s not just a bunch of links; every week Matthew actually writes a letter in which he shares his thoughts accompanied with links to relevant posts of the past week.
Newman is the command line counter part of Postman. I use it to run Postman’s collection in the terminal, especially to batch API calls based on CSV data.
Whenever I need to record or stream a live coding session, I use OBS Studio. In a few click you can transform your computer in a powerful TV production studio. It’s fairly easy to share your screen, add overlays, or switch scene depending on the selected application.
I built the OpenAPI map because I was constantly searching for “how do this with the OpenAPI spec” and also “but where is that thing” in the specification. Having the OpenAPI specification represented as a tree given essential information and quick access to source documentation of each element saved me countless time.
Without the OpenAPI Specification (fka. Swagger Specification), my job would be a total nightmare. It is a machine readable API description format that I use when I design APIs, when reviewing API designs, documenting APIs, checking that implementation conforms to design and build implementation.
I use Postman to do API call when I learn to use a new API. It’s also very powerful and convenient to document API, I try to always have a Postman collection in the code repositories of the APIs I build and if possible, I share it in a public Postman workspace. Postman’s runner feature is incredibly useful to batch API calls with data coming from CSV files.
I use Prism when designing API and showcasing the OpenAPI Specification. It’s really convenient to generate a basic but dynamic mock, fully taking advantage of an OpenAPI document.
I use Spectral while designing APIs and during API design reviews. It is a JSON/YAML linter with built-in support for OpenAPI 2 and 3 (and also AsyncAPI). I use it to check that API designs conform to my guidelines and also to spot unusual design patterns that needs to be discussed with the people in charge of the API. It really speeds up my reviews and help me avoid oversights.
I use Spectral while designing APIs and during API design reviews. It is API an design UI that supports OpenAPI 2 and 3. It comes with a totally awesome Spectral (OpenAPI linter) integration. The UI does not cover all features of the OpenAPI formats, but it’s not a problem for most users: this is the most complete and the best tool of his kind. And I love being able to switch between UI and code views (this also helps to do what you can’t do with the UI).
Thoughtworks is a quite famous software consultancy company, brilliant minds such as Martin Fowler are working there. Every 6 months, they publish their Technology Radar that I enjoy reading to discover new trends, techniques and tools and also to confront my own views to theirs about topics I’m already aware of.
I’m starting to use the Twitter API to do content curation and generate content for the blog based on my Tweets. Using this API also allows me to learn to use Postman.
Visual Studio Code
Whenever I need to wrote code, I write it with Visual Studio Code. This blog and my live coding presentations are powered by VS Code. To be honest, I was quite dubious at first. But now I can’t do without this ultra flexible and customizable code editor with thousands of extensions.
If you wonder what means a 418 HTTP status code or which RFC defines the txn JWT claim, Web concepts is what you’re looking for. I just stopped doing HTTP/web/RFC related search, I now always check Erik Wilde’s web concepts first and usually find what I’m looking for instantly. Icing on the cake, all data is also available in JSON format.