Speaker: Diego Serrano, University of Alberta
Talk: Evolving APIs for Automatic Integration through Linked REST APIs
Over the last decade, an exponentially increasing number of REST services have been providing a simple and straightforward syntax for accessing rich data resources. To use these services, however, developers have to understand “information-use contracts” specified in natural language, and, to build applications that benefit from multiple existing services they have to map the underlying resource schemas in their code. This process is difficult and error-prone, especially as the number and overlap of the underlying services increases, and the mappings become opaque, difficult to maintain, and practically impossible to reuse. The more recent advent of the Linked Data formalisms can offer a solution to the challenge. In this presentation, we propose a conceptual framework for REST-service integration based on Linked Data models. In this framework, the data exposed by REST services is mapped to Linked Data schemas; based on these descriptions, we have developed a middleware that can automatically compose API calls to respond to data queries (in SPARQL). Furthermore, we have developed a RDF model for characterizing the access-control protocols of these APIs and the quality of the data they expose, so that our middleware can develop “legal” compositions with desired qualities. We report our experience with the implementation of a prototype that demonstrates the usefulness of our framework in the context of a research-data management application.
Diego Serrano received his M.Sc. from the Department of Computing Science in the University of Alberta, Canada, where he is now pursuing his Ph.D. under the supervision of Eleni Stroulia at the Service Systems Research Group. His research interests include cloud computing, web service integration, social network analysis and data management systems.