Supercharge Your APIs with OpenAPI: Lunch and Learn – Video Recording

Last week the IBM Developer Advocates team hosted another Lunch-and-Learn event. Erin McKean covered the OpenAPI spec (formerly known as Swagger), what it is, and how using the spec makes it easier to plan, create, test, and share your APIs?
If you missed the event, you can watch the live-streamed version below.  The session covered:
  • What is the OpenAPI spec?
  • How can you create an OpenAPI description for your new or existing API?
  • What can you do with your OpenAPI description—including automated testing, code generation, creating interactive documentation, and more!
  • How you can get involved with the spec and how to share the benefits of OpenAPI with your team

Part 1:

Part 2:

Looking for more events like this – check out our upcoming events in San Francisco and the South Bay.

Video Tutorial: How to Build an App with Barcode Scanner and SQL Database

In this video tutorial you will learn how to build a mobile app that allows you to scan a product barcode and save into a relational database. The tutorial covers:

  • Connecting to a relational database
  • Exposing the database via REST APis using API Express
  • Designing the app UI with visual App Builder
  • Generating REST API services
  • Using and binding API services in the app
  • Testing the app on device using the Tester app

If you liked this, learn from other videos on our YouTube channel.

Everything You Need to Know How to Run and Test Your Hybrid App Fast [Video]

This short video shows how to run and test your hybrid app without going through the app store.

In this video you will learn:

  • How to extend your app with plugins
  • How to add a plugin that uploads a photo to a database
  • How to run and test the app using the Tester app for iOS or Android
  • How to do remote debugging with Weinre
  • How to share your app with anyone without the app store — even if they don’t have account

If you like this, start building apps fast with, it’s free.

Create Server Code Script to Invoke a REST API in 5 Minutes

This video shows how to invoke a REST API from the Server Code script. There are a number of benefits to invoke a REST API from the server instead of directly from the client:

  1. JavaScript is the language used to write the script
  2. Additional business logic can be added around the API. For example, in addition to sending an SMS, you can also send an email (SendGrid API)
  3. The API keys and tokens are secure
  4. Script is exposed via REST API (to be invoked from the app)
  5. Script has API to access Database, Push
  6. A script can be saved as a library and used in other scripts
  7. Script changes can be made without updating the client (app)

Integrate Platform with Other Systems Using Webhooks

You can quickly integrate platform with other systems using Webhooks. You can create and register a Webhook to make HTTP POST request to an external URL (your system) when a specific event occurs in platform. In other words, your system will be notified when an event occurs in It’s always best to look at an example, so let’s do that.

First lets see for what kind of events you can register a Webhook. platform supports two types of Webhooks: 1) app specific Webhooks, and 2) account specific Webhooks.

App Webhooks

You can register a Webhook for the following app events:

  • App version created
  • App version removed
  • App version restored
  • App published on
  • App published on Heroku
  • Android build success
  • Android build failure
  • Android build abort
  • Android build start
  • iOS build success
  • iOS build failure
  • iOS build abort
  • iOS build start
  • App test

For example, when you create a new version of an app (App version created), you can register a Webhook that will make a request to your system, letting the system know that a new app version was created. The request includes detailed information about the event.
Continue reading “Integrate Platform with Other Systems Using Webhooks”

What is the Difference Between and PhoneGap?

A common question we get asked is: “What is the difference between and PhoneGap?”. The simple answer is platform uses PhoneGap (actually Apache Cordova). But let’s look into this more.

First, what is difference between PhoneGap and Apache Cordova?. Cordova is an open source framework that has two core capabilities:

  • It allows to package an HTML/JS app as hybrid mobile app. Basically you run HTML/JS app inside a native wrapper (hybrid app) but it basically looks and behaves like a native app. This allows you to target multiple mobile platforms using a single code base.
  • It provides a simple Javascript API to access native device features such as Camera from HTML/JS app

PhoneGap is owned by Adobe and the name it uses for the product. Adobe acquired Nitobi in 200x the maker of PhoneGap and donated the library source to Apache under the name of Apache Cordova. PhoneGap today is Adobe’s product that consists of Cordova plus some extra features around the framework (to make it a product and brand name).

Even thought most people use the names PhoneGap and Cordova interchangeably, bundles Cordova in every app.

Cordova allows to package the app as hybrid and provides API to access native device features. You still need a development tool (IDE) to build the app with Cordova. You need a Javascript framework that provides UI components for your app. You still need to connect to REST API services in your app and you need an API backend for your app such as a cloud database, push notifications and server code.

All these features and more are provided by Cordova is just a component within platform which enables to build hybrid apps. and Cordova don’t complete but compliment each other.

Video: Advanced Backend Services

This webinar shows some of the more advanced and interesting backend services features.

The webinar covers:

  • Database
    • Security and permissions
    • Queries
  • Push Notifications
    • Sending push to particular devices
    • Scheduling push notifications
  • Secure REST (secure proxy)
    • Keeping sensitive data such as API keys on the server

Gluecon 2014 in Tweets and Pictures

This week I attended the awesome Gluecon 2014 conference. Here are some of the (my) most interesting and memorable tweets from the conference.

Why Mobile Development Tools Will Be Shifting to the Browser

It is clear that the cloud is disrupting the way most software is deployed and consumed. Benefits such as elasticity, agility, and operational cost savings make it very compelling for companies to go with the cloud model, and the simplicity of the browser compared to desktop software makes cloud software a favorite for end users, as well. The battle between and Siebel back in the 2000s is a constant reminder of the dramatic advantages of the cloud model. The benefits of the cloud model are so compelling that it would be hard for an idea that bets against that model to even get VC funding.

What about software development tools? Why are most developers still downloading gigabytes of software libraries and installing it on their laptops? Should development tools move inside the browser also? Yes—software development tools will also end up disrupted by the cloud.

Continue reading on Slashdot