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Practical ReST is a crowd-funded book, first of a kind: A full brain-dump of @serialseb’s ReST architectures, based on building ReSTful systems for 8 years, building OSS tooling around resource-oriented architecture and delivering ReST courses for the masses all over Europe!

The subject

ReST APIs, ReST frameworks, we hear about ReST all the time. With so much disparate content available, and with so many opinions floating around about what is restful or what is not, it’s a hard life being a developer on the web these days!

ReST, or representational state transfer, is not hard to grasp, once you’ve spent enough time looking at it. I’ve done the blank staring, and now you can reap the benefits!

Learn about what ReST is, what application state means, how to use links, how forms loose the coupling between client and server, how you can layer systems to reap the benefits of distributing load, how to do ReST with DDD and CQRS, and much more!

The book

The book is at an early stage: the chapters are being extracted from the various modules taught in the class, and the most common questions that have popped up over the years.

The project is ready to go, the publishing pipeline is being designed, and an editor is ready to start receiving chapters. The only missing bit is the content: the more funding, the faster this will come!

Topics covered include hypermedia (links, forms, modular state transition design), security, state management, distribution, reuse of existing formats (atom, rdf and even a bit of html), fundamentals of distributed computing, and of course a healthy dose of RFCs.

What’s in it?

The book is designed to allow two very different reading modes. For those that want to learn everything there is to know, it can be read cover to cover, in a nicely flowing story. If however one wants to jump in for a quick refresher on a sepcific topic (“How do I explicitly do CQRS?”, or “How to implement a queue?”), the chapter structure will allow that.

To achieve this, each topic will be split in two parts: the theory bits will detail the context for the topic (what the technology is, why it is the way it is and where it comes from), a detailed description of how to use it, full with coloured http requests and responses; a practical faq-style will answer the most common questions and patterns people can apply.

In other words, if you want to know how, go to the questions. If you want to know why, go to the theory bits. If you want to know everything, read it all!

The book itself will not contain code, only HTTP. There will be accompanying code samples, to start with in .net (Web API and OpenRasta) and nodejs. If there is enough demand, versions for Rails, Sinatra, Java or whatever other language of the day can be built. All of it will be made available in open-source under an MIT license, so maybe the community will build the alternative versions.

When can I get it?

Work has started on drafts for the first chapter, which should be ready by the time the kickstarter project finishes. If we sell more books, we’ll have more chapters ready. If we don’t reach the target, the chapters won’t be available until later in the year. Simples!

Of course, if you’ve opted for the premium edition, you get access to the github containing the books as soon as I get your github’s account name, and see how the magic happens!

What next?

The more money I get, the more time I can spend working exclusively on the book. So buy your copy now. Or buy two! Buy it for your colleagues, your mom, your sister, your neighbour! The more books sold the more content I can write!q