July 1, 2016 Comments Off on Helpful REST API 101 guide available online
For software developers and architects tasked with creating programmatic interfaces to their applications, there’s been a longstanding debate between utilizing the structure and standards of SOAP-based Web services versus offering the freedom and flexibility of REST APIs.
In the midst of all these deliberations, I’ve observed a great deal of confusion about what, exactly, defines a REST API. SmartBear has come up with a helpful resource that provides a nice overview of the origins, attributes, and goals of REST APIs. You can view the guide here.
If you’re interested in learning more about REST API design, development, and testing, check out my other postings on the subject.
December 29, 2015 Comments Off on Free data-driven API testing eBook is now available
I recently had the pleasure of co-hosting a data-driven API testing Webinar with Paul Bruce from SmartBear. I’ve compiled the recommendations we made during this event into a free eBook which you can now download. A special thanks to Kim Salmon from SmartBear for her help in getting the book developed and published!
November 30, 2015 Comments Off on New training course for API performance testing using LoadUI NG Pro
As a longtime user, trainer, and consultant for SmartBear’s excellent SoapUI API functional testing software, I’m happy to announce the availability of a new companion course dedicated to mission-critical API performance testing using LoadUI NG Pro.
LoadUI NG Pro is one of the four components that comprise the superb Ready! API platform (the others are SoapUI NG Pro, Secure Pro, and ServiceV Pro), and I believe it has the potential to revolutionize how businesses ensure that their APIs are production-ready.
The hands-on class – which is offered either as a private Webinar or private onsite delivery, and can be paired with site-specific consulting – covers a wide variety of essential subjects:
- Ready! API Platform & LoadUI NG Pro Architecture
- Load Testing Concepts & Best Practices
- Designing and Developing a Load Test
- Running a Load Test
- Analyzing Results
If you’d like to get a detailed syllabus and learn more about the course, please email me and I’ll put you in touch with SmartBear.
October 15, 2015 Comments Off on Presenting a Data-driven API Testing Webinar with SmartBear on October 28
As long as computers are incapable of interacting telepathically, APIs will continue to serve as the predominant approach for cross-system communication over the Internet.
Alas, comprehensive API testing continues to occupy a distressingly low position on the software development To Do list. This is a shame, because there are some fantastic technologies and associated best practices that make it possible to quickly, easily, and thoroughly evaluate APIs for reliability, accuracy, and performance.
Since data-driven probes are some of the most effective techniques to determine if an API is ready for production, Paul Bruce from SmartBear and I will be presenting a technically-focused Webinar on how to employ winning data-oriented strategies in your testing.
To register for the Webinar, click here.
August 27, 2015 Comments Off on Not scared of algorithms? Perhaps you should be.
A while back, I wrote about a run-in I had with a rental car company, or to put it more accurately: a rental car company’s algorithm. It’s quite frightening to think about the implications of “lights-out” algorithms making important decisions that can affect all aspects of your life. And as someone who witnesses – first hand – the often abysmal job that enterprises do when testing their APIs (which frequently have algorithms running beneath the covers), I’m particularly concerned about what this will spell for the future.
If you’d like to learn more about these possible repercussions, check out the extremely well written article by Frank Pasquale on aeon.co.
Cyberspace is no longer an escape from the ‘real world’. It is now a force governing it via algorithms: recipe-like sets of instructions to solve problems. From Google search to OkCupid matchmaking, software orders and weights hundreds of variables into clean, simple interfaces, taking us from query to solution. Complex mathematics govern such answers, but it is hidden from plain view, thanks either to secrecy imposed by law, or to complexity outsiders cannot unravel.
If you’d like to read more of my posts about Big Data, click here.
May 30, 2015 Comments Off on Increased reliance on APIs demands more effective testers
It seems everywhere you look these days, someone is extolling the virtues of APIs. For example, here’s an article from Fortune that highlights how APIs are serving as competitive differentiators.
However, those enterprises that are placing such emphasis on their APIs must appreciate that they also need to invest in their testing staff with proper tooling and training. I recently wrote about this on the SmartBear blog, which you can read here.
March 1, 2015 Comments Off on ServiceV – a superb service virtualization technology for the API and Agile era
I’ve been working with SoapUI since its earliest days, and I’m very excited about the direction that SmartBear is taking the Ready! API platform, which includes products such as SoapUI NG Pro, LoadUI NG Pro, Security, and ServiceV Pro.
At WiseClouds we deliver classes and supporting consulting services on all these exciting solutions, and we’re honored that SmartBear directly sells these courses to their clients. Many of our students go on to earn their SoapUI certification after attending these classes.
Mock services have long been one of the most useful features in SoapUI. Customers use mock services to quickly stand up virtual versions of the real services (SOAP and REST) that are in development. They can then construct their tests using these virtual services and then quickly switch over to the live services once they’re ready. Some of these enterprises have come up with really creative uses for mock services, including simulating middleware, third party APIs, telecom switches, and all sorts of other scenarios.
ServiceV represents a bold step forward for SmartBear, offering tremendous new functionality (such as assertions, datasources, and simulation for network latency and message buses – to name just a few) for creating virtual services, which are now known as Virts.
ServiceV is an idea whose time has come, for two primary reasons:
1. The rise of the API economy
It’s no secret that APIs are more essential than even before: it’s nearly impossible to go through your day without interacting with an API, whether or not you know it. They are the foundation of modern software, infrastructure, and the entire Internet. And APIs commonly invoke other APIs, which is an enormous increase in complexity.
This means that properly testing these assets is not an optional responsibility: it’s mandatory, and will continue to gain in importance. Failing to adequately test APIs can be disastrous – just read the news most days for the latest examples of outages, breakins, and other API failures.
ServiceV makes it easy to develop comprehensive tests that truly reflect the realities of the modern, API-based information-processing environment.
2. The advent of Agile delivery methodologies for software
Thanks to Agile techniques, software of all types – including APIs – is delivered much more frequently now. In many organizations, the quality assurance team is finding it nearly impossible to keep pace with the frenetic schedules driven by these practices.
ServiceV is a way for architects, developers, and operations staff to provide something for their quality assurance colleagues to use while the actual services are still being shaped and refined.
At WiseClouds, we’re so enthusiastic about what ServiceV represents that in addition to our current training and consulting solutions, we’ll be launching an exciting new Software as a Service offering that’s built upon ServiceV. If you’d like to learn more about that, be sure to subscribe to the blog and I’ll keep you posted.