How to Invoke the Watson Language Translator API from an Appery.io App

In this blog post you will learn how to invoke the Watson Language Translator API from an Appery.io app. Before you will learn how to do that, let me give you a quick overview of the Appery.io platform.

Appery.io is a cloud platform for building and running mobile web and hybrid apps. The platform provides the following major benefits:

  • A visual, drag and drop UI builder (based on jQuery Mobile, Ionic or Bootstrap)
  • A cloud database for storing app data.
  • Node.js-like environment (called Server Code) for running any custom app code (written in JavaScript).
  • API Express for connecting to any external/enterprise data sources such as a SQL database, web service or a REST API.
  • Sending Push Notifications.

If you are looking for more Appery.io content, simply look for posts tagged with Appery.io.

Appery.io makes it very easy to invoke any 3rd party REST APIs using Server Code or API Express. In this blog post you will learn how to invoke the Watson Language Translator API from Server Code. Let’s start.

Watson Language Translator API

In this section you will learn how to start with the IBM Cloud and launch the Watson Language Translator API. The Language Translator API allows to translate one language to another language. Other API features include detecting the what language was entered. To learn more about the API here.

Continue reading “How to Invoke the Watson Language Translator API from an Appery.io App”

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.

How to Send a Fax with Appery.io and Twilio Fax API

Twilio launched a new API that allows sending faxes. From the very start Appery.io platform made it very simple to connect to any external REST API. We love Twilio API and have an example and video on how to use the SMS API. The Fax API is as elegant and simple to use. In this blog post you will learn how to send a fax using the Twilio Fax API from a Server Code script.

Create a new Server Code script and copy the following script:

var url = "https://fax.twilio.com/v1/Faxes";
var accountSid = "AC3526fbeed7...............";
var token = "8703513246d3f445e............";
var to = "To number";
var from = "Your Twilio number"
var mediaUrl = "https://www.twilio.com/docs/documents/25/justthefaxmaam.pdf";

var XHRResponse = XHR2.send("POST", url, {
   "body": "To=" + encodeURIComponent(to) + "&From=" + encodeURIComponent(from) + "&MediaUrl="+mediaUrl,
   "headers": {
      Authorization: "Basic " + encodeBase64(accountSid + ":" + token),
      "Content-Type": "application/x-www-form-urlencoded"
   }
});

Apperyio.response.success(XHRResponse.body, "application/json");

The script is simple and does a POST request to the Twilio Fax API.

Line 1 is the Twilio Fax API endpoint.

Line 2 and 3 are Twilio Account SID and Auth Token. You can get both from the console dashboard.

Line 4 is where to send the fax (number).

Line 5 is your Twilio number.

Line 6 is a link to a document you want to fax. You can set it to any PDF file accessible via a direct link (or use the sample one provided by Twilio).

Line 8 is where the POST request is invoked with all the information.

Twilio Fax API uses Basic Authentication so the Account SID and Auth Token need to be encoded as Base64. There is an out-of-the-box plug-in that you can add to your account. The plug-in has a function to encode a string as Base64.

  1. Open the dropdown list (on the left) and select Back to list.
  2. Open the Plugins tab.
  3. Find the EncodeBase64 plugin and click insert to add it to your account. The plugin will be listed in the Library section. You can now use it in any other script.
  4. One more step is to add this library as a dependency for your script. Open that script you created. Go to Dependencies tab and click on EncodeBase64_Library.

You are ready to test the script.

Go back to the Script tab and open the Run tab (on the right). Click on Save and run button to invoke the API and send the fax.

The response should look like this:

{
   "date_updated": "2017-04-06T13:13:40Z",
   "date_created": "2017-04-06T13:13:40Z",
   "num_pages": null,
   "api_version": "v1",
   "media_url": null,
   "url":
   "https://fax.twilio.com/v1/Faxes/FX225bab5034cb8a335c45...............",
   "sid": "FX225bab5034cb8a335c45...............",
   "quality": "fine",
   "duration": null,
   "price_unit": null,
   "price": null,
   "account_sid": "AC3526fbeed7...............",
   "from": "+1415xxxxxxx",
   "to": "+1925xxxxxxx",
   "status": "queued",
   "direction": "outbound"
}

You can navigate to the URL set in the url attribute – there you will be able to see the status of the sent fax (the browser will ask you to login, use the Account SID and Auth Token values).

It can take a few minutes for the fax to be delivered, keep that in mind when testing. If you fax the pre-set PDF file then yon you will the following fax:

twilio-just-the-fax-man
Twilio sample fax

To learn more about Server Code check the Appery.io YouTube playlist. Happy faxing.

How to Expose a Database Stored Procedure and a Function as a REST API

Appery.io API Express makes it easy to expose a SQL query as a REST API. You can as easily expose a database stored procedure or a database function as a REST API. The following two blogs posts will teach you how to do that:

Want to learn more about API Express? Check our the Appery.io YouTube channel for videos on how to integrate with external data sources using API Express.

 

Video: How to Call WordPress REST API

Watch this short video to learn how to call the WordPress REST API from an Appery.io app. The video shows two approaches invoking the API.  First, it shows how to invoke an API using API Express. Second, it shows how to invoke an API from Server Code.

If you like this video, check the Appery.io YouTube channel for many more short videos to help you build apps faster.

Exposing a SQL Database via REST APIs: A Video Guide for Developers

Many organizations that are building mobile apps need to connect and reuse existing (internal) systems. One of the most common system is a relational (SQL) database. The question is — how to a relational database from a mobile app.

I have prepared two short videos that will show you how to do that using Appery.io API Express.

API Express connects to a relational database and exposes the database tables via REST APIs. Once the APIs are created, the mobile app can easily consume the APIs.

There are two approaches exposing a database:

The first approach automatically generates CRUD-like APIs to work with a database table. In many apps, this is close to 80% of what an app might need. This automatic approach also comes with very sophisticated offline support. In other words, you app can work offline and sync data with a remote database when a connection is reestablished.

With the second approach, you get full control as you write the actual SQL query (or Stored Procedure) that will be executed. With this approach, you can use a visual service editor to orchestrate the REST API. In addition to the SQL component (connector), you can use connectors such as Web Service (WSDL), REST  and others.

Check out the API Express video playlist to learn more.

How to Convert Phone Numbers Into Real Business Data with EveryoneAPI

EveryoneAPI by Telo allows to convert a phone number into real business intelligence with a simple API request. The complete reverse phone append product is simple to use, yet powerful and built for developers by developers. As you probably already know, integrating with any 3rd party REST API using the Appery.io Server Code is also simple. In this blog post, I will show you how to invoke a test a script that calls the Everyone API.

To start, create a new Server Code script with the following code:

var telephone = request.get("telephone");
var url = "https://api.everyoneapi.com/v1/phone/"+telephone;
var auth_token  = "AU83e975.....";
var account_sid = "AC659275.....";

var XHRResponse = XHR2.send("GET", url, {
   "parameters": {
      "auth_token": auth_token,
      "account_sid": account_sid,
      "pretty": "true"
   }
});
Apperyio.response.success(XHRResponse.body, "application/json");

The only thing you need to do, is to replace the auth_token and account_sid with values from your account. Sign up for an account here. It’s fast and simple.

The phone number for which you want to get information is passed as a parameter to the script (line 1). To test the script, switch to Script parameter tab (on the right side), enter a parameter called telephone and then set it to a test value. Here is an example testing the API using the Appery.io telephone number:

everyoneap_servercode.png
AnyoneAPI Server Code script

Once you finished and tested the script, you easily import into your app. This video shows how to do that.

Looking for more APIs by Telo? Check out the CallerID Server Code plug-in:

callerid_servercode_plugin.png
Caller ID Server Code plug-in

This plug-in creates a Server Code script that integrates with OpenCNAM API. The OpenCNAM API allows you to get caller ID information for phone number provided.

How to Connect to FullContact API From Appery.io Server Code

FullContact Developer APIs such as Person API, Company API, Email API and others can provide social profiles in an app, improve contacts in address book, enrich CRM information, and create marketing campaigns.

To make it simple to use FullContact API, we created a Server Code plug-in that quickly creates a script to invoke the Person API. You only need to set the FullContact API key. The following animated GIF shows how to insert the FullContact plug-in and its script:

fullcontact_servercode

Once you set the API key, it’s fast to test the script and the API. Switch to Run tab to test the script. The script comes with a sample email. Feel free to change the input data.

FullContact_ServerCode_run-1024x429.png
Script testing

You can also set the email as a script parameter. Update the script code to look like this:

var email = request.get("email");

and then add the parameter on Script parameters tab.

Using the Server Code plug-in for FullContact API it’s fast and simple to invoke the Person API. Using this plug-in as a starting point, you can update the script to include other API parameters or use other APIs.

A Quick Guide to Sending Push Notifications

Being able to send Push Notifications to users is one of the fundamental capability in an enterprise mobile app. Appery.io platform comes with Push Notifications component out-of-the-box and allows you quickly to send targeted messages to iOS and Android devices. In this blog post we will show the four ways to send a Push Notification message to a user:

  1. Push Notifications Console.
  2. Server Code Push Notifications API (server-side).
  3. Push Notification REST API.
  4. Customer Console.

Push Notifications Console

This first option is probably the simplest way to send a Push Notifications once you have installed an app on a device. Select device types, enter the message and send. The Push Notification message should arrive on the registered device instantly.

 

PN_console.png
Push Notifications console.

 

Continue reading “A Quick Guide to Sending Push Notifications”

Quickly Invoke Lyft API from Appery.io Server Code

Appery.io Server Code makes it simple to invoke any external REST API. In this blog post, I will show you how to invoke Lyft API. I will use the Ride Types API to show what types of cars are available based on a location – latitude and longitude. Lyft is a ride sharing company that’s disrupting car ownership and moving forward with self-driving cars initiative.

Let’s start with the tutorial.

The first step is to perform authentication to get an access token to invoke any Lyft API. As the Ride Types API doesn’t use any user data, you can use client credentials for authentication. The script to get an access token looks like this:

var url = "https://api.lyft.com/oauth/token";
var client_id = "<client_id>";
var client_secret = "<client_secret>";

var XHRResponse = XHR2.send("POST", url, {
  "body": {
    "grant_type": "client_credentials",
    "scope": "public"
  },
  "headers": {
    "Content-Type": "application/json",
    "Authorization": "Basic "+encodeBase64(client_id+":"+client_secret)
  }
});
Apperyio.response.success(XHRResponse.body, "application/json");

The response will look like this:

{
   "expires_in": 86400,
   "token_type": "Bearer",
   "scope": "public",
   "access_token": "<access_token>"
}

Once you have the access_token, it is as simple to invoke the Ride Types API:

var url = "https://api.lyft.com/v1/ridetypes"; // REST API URL

var XHRResponse = XHR2.send("GET", url, {
  "parameters": {
    "lat": "37.7833", // San Francisco
    "lng": "-122.4167"
  },
  "headers": {
    "Authorization": "Bearer " + &lt;access_token&gt;
  }
});
Apperyio.response.success(XHRResponse.body, "application/json");

The response looks like this, it shows the type of rides available in San Francisco: Lyft, Lyft Line, and Lyft Plus.

{
	"ride_types": [{
		"ride_type": "lyft_line",
		"pricing_details": {
			"cost_per_minute": 23,
			"base_charge": 200,
			"currency": "USD",
			"trust_and_service": 175,
			"cost_per_mile": 115,
			"cancel_penalty_amount": 500,
			"cost_minimum": 475
		},
		"image_url": "https://s3.amazonaws.com/api.lyft.com/assets/car_standard.png",
		"seats": 2,
		"display_name": "Lyft Line"
	}, {
		"display_name": "Lyft",
		"image_url": "https://s3.amazonaws.com/api.lyft.com/assets/car_standard.png",
		"pricing_details": {
			"cost_minimum": 500,
			"cost_per_minute": 23,
			"base_charge": 200,
			"currency": "USD",
			"trust_and_service": 175,
			"cost_per_mile": 115,
			"cancel_penalty_amount": 500
		},
		"ride_type": "lyft",
		"seats": 4
	}, {
		"display_name": "Lyft Plus",
		"ride_type": "lyft_plus",
		"image_url": "https://s3.amazonaws.com/api.lyft.com/assets/car_plus.png",
		"seats": 6,
		"pricing_details": {
			"currency": "USD",
			"cost_minimum": 700,
			"cost_per_mile": 200,
			"trust_and_service": 175,
			"cancel_penalty_amount": 500,
			"cost_per_minute": 30,
			"base_charge": 300
		}
	}]
}

Want to learn how to build mobile apps fast? Check out the Appery.io YouTube channel for videos.