TL;DR: API testing can be a daunting task given the constant emergence of new APIs. However, tools like Postman, designed for testing RESTful APIs, can simplify the process. This article discusses how Postman helps in understanding the data structure, building effective subroutines, and conducting group tests for a better API development experience.
APIs may seem tricky, especially with new ones being introduced daily. Wrapping your head around one, let alone keeping up with all of them, can be time-consuming. However, the solution to simplifying this process might just be asking the Postman. Postman is a powerful tool for testing RESTful APIs, and this article will guide you through harnessing its capabilities. So, let’s dive in!
REST, or Representational State Transfer, as described by Roy Fielding in his 2003 Doctoral Thesis, is essentially a set of constraints that a system must abide by to be considered RESTful.
Believe in the Postman
Getting started with Postman is straightforward. You can visit Postman’s website and download either the desktop client program or the app for Google Chrome. Although usage instructions are beyond this article’s scope, exploring and experimenting with the tool yourself can be a fun and enlightening exercise!
One important feature to pay attention to is the ‘tests’ option, which can be handy for semi-automating your API tests. Grouping these tests in collections allows you to run multiple tests simultaneously and evaluate the server responses for each test upon conclusion.
Build A Better API
Often, most APIs are simple JSON or XML APIs, rather than true RESTful APIs. This is because they do not instruct the client on how to interact with the API. Typically, the API is not exposed to the client, with only the interface accessible. Therefore, most engineers avoid fully building out the API, as the interface usually constrains the interactions. The primary concern becomes storing the data and accessing it quickly and efficiently.
Postman can significantly assist in understanding the data structure and developing effective calls and subroutines to move data within your application efficiently. You can use Postman to test your custom API or explore 3rd-party APIs. Embracing Postman can introduce an exciting intellectual challenge to your API development process.
API testing can be a complicated endeavor, but tools like Postman can simplify and streamline the process. By helping understand data structures, enabling efficient data management, and allowing semi-automated group tests, Postman serves as a valuable ally for both novice and seasoned API developers. So, next time you’re grappling with an API, remember to ask the Postman!