The ENLC expects to finalize its Implementation Plan for Phase 2 of the Exchange Network in April 2013. Many of the Plan’s strategies and actions aim to make it easier for Network Partners to publish environmental data that are readily accessible, timely, and easy to use. The Network Technology Group has been exploring ways to achieve this goal by incorporating a different style of web service development based on an approach called Representational State Transfer or REST. Under the right circumstances, RESTful web services can help simplify the process of providing or consuming environmental information.
Network Governance believes that RESTful web services are an important compliment to more traditional Exchange Network services. Many Partners are already extensively using REST to offer access to their information. To promote and ensure the standardized use of REST services on the Network, Governance has developed a REST Guidance. Available here, the document provides guidance on how to develop and document REST services in a consistent manner.
Network Partners are encouraged to use the REST Guidance to simplify the discovery and consumption of REST services through standardized design, documentation, and registration. These recommendations are relevant for data providers implementing REST services either as an extension of their Exchange Network Node or through a separate application. The Guidance provides background on RESTful services; describes scenarios in which they can most effectively compliment traditional Exchange Network services; and provides information on maximizing the usability of REST services by adhering to standardized approaches for design and documentation.
EN Governance is interested in hearing from the EN Community about the usefulness of the REST Guidance and how it can be improved. An Open Conference Call to discuss the REST Guidance will be scheduled in the near future and announced via an EN Alert. In the meantime, feedback and questions can be sent to kurt [at] exchangenetwork.net.
Exchange Network Coordinator
E: kurt [at] exchangenetwork.net