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Lee Hicks

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SQL and REST - Working with Related Data

Posted by Lee Hicks

Wed, May 2, 2018

As a follow up to our other blog posts on adding a REST API to your SQL database and retrieving related data from that REST API, I wanted to describe, in more detail, the power of the "related records" feature of our SQL DB Service of the REST API.

Wrangling Your Data with Database Functions

Posted by Lee Hicks

Thu, Feb 2, 2017

One of the fundamental goals of the DreamFactory platform is to make it easy to get the data you want, in the format you want, from the sources you have available. Sometimes the type and/or format of the data in the database isn't easy to pass to and from a client RESTfully, particularly using JSON or XML payloads. DreamFactory's database functions support solves this problem.

REST API SQL

Queueing With DreamFactory Scripting

Posted by Lee Hicks

Tue, Dec 13, 2016

DreamFactory has long supported scripting as a way of allowing users to extend the handling capabilities of existing APIs (i.e. performing actions pre- and post-processing like modifying the request or response), or adding new APIs altogether via scripted services. This has proven to be a very popular feature of DreamFactory, but until release 2.3 it was missing a very big "nice to have", that being a way to save or queue the scripts to be run at a later time and not take the hit of processing the script at the time of the API call. Thus the advent of queued scripting.

Custom Scripting Queued Events

Virtual Relationships Redux

Posted by Lee Hicks

Tue, Dec 6, 2016

In the early part of 2016, we introduced a feature called DataMesh, also known as Virtual Relationships, or Virtual Foreign Keys. The idea behind this feature is to allow users to set up “virtual foreign keys” to relate data across tables in the same SQL database where foreign keys did not exist or were not desired, or across different SQL databases altogether. We even allowed relating a SQL database table to a MongoDB collection, opening up a whole new way for a client to retrieve all the data it needed, molded in a way that was easily consumable.

SQL MongoDB Related Data DataMesh Foreign Keys

Exploring the new options for stored procedures

Posted by Lee Hicks

Fri, Jul 15, 2016

The ability to discover and execute stored procedures and functions has been available in DreamFactory's REST API for a while now. With the 2.2.1 release, we have enhanced the usability of these resources quite a bit, adding the ability to retrieve their parameter information, as well as, simplifying the way you call them.

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Virtual Relationships Between Database Tables

Posted by Lee Hicks

Thu, Feb 4, 2016

A few years ago, we wrote a blog post about working with related data using the DreamFactory REST API platform. The SQL DB service can return a table along with any number of related tables in a single API call. You can POST the JSON document back to the API in order to create, update, or delete the related data. DreamFactory automatically maintains all of the links and junction objects for you. This is possible because we use the schema information stored in the database to learn about the various relationships between the tables.

But what if you have tables that are related in some way, and those relationships are not detailed in the schema? What if the related tables exist on different databases, or even on different servers? Previously, the only solution was to make multiple calls from the client-side and assemble the information as needed. Or you could create a custom service or write a server-side script to combine unrelated tables of data. Here is a recent blog post about how to do this.

But now, with the introduction of DreamFactory 2.0, developers can specify virtual relationships between any two tables. The tables can be located on different databases, and the databases can be located on different servers. This is a game changing capability because now a developer can create, read, update, and delete related data across multiple servers with a single REST API call!

These virtual relationships are imposed from outside by the DreamFactory platform. There is no need to change the actual configuration of your database. What's more, once DreamFactory knows about the virtual relationships, you can work with related data of any kind without the need for server-side scripting. This feature packs even more capability into the request URL string itself, further reducing the need to build custom REST APIs.

Why We Chose Laravel for Building DreamFactory 2.0

Posted by Lee Hicks

Thu, Apr 30, 2015

A couple of years ago, the DreamFactory engineering team took our ideas and prototypes for a RESTful services backend integration platform. We started looking for a good base framework to build on, and to determine how much we would need to write on our own. To some degree, we did a little of both, settling with a hybrid based on the Yii 1.1 framework. That served us well for getting the DreamFactory Services Platform off the ground and to its current state.

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Adding Users to Your DSP

Posted by Lee Hicks

Tue, Nov 12, 2013

 So, you have your DSP setup and an idea for an awesome app, now what? Well, unless you are the type that likes to be the sole beneficiary of your work and/or you like working all by your lonesome, then you are going to need to get other people in the mix.

Whether its adding consumers, collaborators, or customers, DreamFactory DSP provides several ways to add users to your DSP. Once added, you control what they can do by provisioning their role-based accesses.

NoSQL, No Problem! - MongoDB Specifics

Posted by Lee Hicks

Fri, Oct 4, 2013

LeeHicksFor the third installment on this blog series on DreamFactory Services Platform (DSP) support for NoSQL, I wanted to include a little more information on how to use MongoDB as a service. As you may or may not know, MongoDB is the leading NoSQL database currently, and while it does come with a REST interface, it is simple and has no support for CRUD operations on the data itself and is generally used for monitoring or administrative tasks. We have taken one of the native drivers available and added a fully REST-based and “blended” (see earlier post) API for collection and document (otherwise known as table and record) operations.

NoSQL

NoSQL, No Problem! - Operation Specifics

Posted by Lee Hicks

Wed, Aug 28, 2013

LeeHicksAs a continuation to my initial blog on NoSQL support on the DreamFactory Services Platform (DSP), I would like to give you a little more information on how to use the NoSQL service operations. Designed to be flexible and powerful, yet still adhere to simple REST principles, there are several options for CRUD operations available in the DSP REST API for NoSQL services.

NoSQL, No Problem!

Posted by Lee Hicks

Mon, Aug 12, 2013

LeeHicksYou may have already seen that DreamFactory Service Platform (DSP) supports SQL databases with its REST API, but did you know that we also support most of the popular NoSQL databases? Currently, DSPs support Amazon Web Services' SimpleDB and DynamoDB, Windows Azure's Tables, MongoDB, MongoHQ, and CouchDB.

Why We Like Swagger for API Docs

Posted by Lee Hicks

Tue, Jun 4, 2013

LeeHicksNothing makes a REST API easier to use than good documentation. Well, nothing except maybe a live test environment right there in the documentation. And help with generating client side code to use your API would be awesome too. Come to think of it, having the documentation and test environment dynamic enough to update as you on-board more services would be a major plus. Well, you get all that and more with the latest DreamFactory DSP REST API with Swagger.

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