Developing our first RESTful API

It’s long been our belief at Northstone Systems that we should make our systems as open as possible for our customers. Giving them clear access to their data is of vital importance. That is why during 2017 we set about creating and developing our first RESTful API (Application Programming Interface) for our iVech Rental Management System.

Initially, we have to admit that our API wasn’t widely used except for when we created websites for our own customers. However, the effort put into the API meant the process of developing websites for our customers was greatly improved. Skip ahead to 2018 and our API has now been used by third party customers to develop their own websites directly, or to integrate with third party broker websites.

For those not familiar with our developing procedures, we use the CodeIgniter framework as the basis of our systems. This allows for rapid development using the Model, View, Control approach. This also allowed to develop our REST API with great speed, utilising our already existing database classes. Remaining as open source as possible, we turned to the restserver library on github written by Phil Sturgeon and Chris Kacerguis. This provided a firm basis for us to create and develop our API.

Over the coming months, we have a road map set out for where we would like to take our API. This includes increasing the range of functionalities it can carry out. We are also updating our WordPress plugin to utilise more of this API, before releasing this to the WordPress repository for customers to take advantage of. We are also looking to develop our second API for use with our TyreTec system, allowing direct pricing and integration to take place outside of the system.

If you’ve got any questions on our API or integrations with either iVech or TyreTec, please contact the team.

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