Most "pythonic" syntax to use for an API client library

Thomas Jollans tjol at tjol.eu
Mon Apr 29 04:54:10 EDT 2019


On 29/04/2019 09.18, Peter Otten wrote:
> Jonathan Leroy - Inikup via Python-list wrote:
> 
>> Hi all,
>>
>> I'm writing a client library for a REST API. The API endpoints looks like
>> this: /customers
>> /customers/1
>> /customers/1/update
>> /customers/1/delete
>>
>> Which of the following syntax do you expect an API client library to
>> use, and why?
>>
>> 1/
>> api.customers_list()
>> api.customers_info(1)
>> api.customers_update(1, name='Bob')
>> api.customers_delete(1)
>>
>> 2/
>> api.customers.list()
>> api.customers.info(1)
>> api.customers.update(1, name='Bob')
>> api.customers.delete(1)
>>
>> 3/
>> api.customers.list()
>> api.customers(1).info()
>> api.customers(1).update(name='Bob')
>> api.customers(1).delete()
>>
>> ...any other?
> 
> How about mimicking (to some extent) an existing interface, like a list, 
> dict, or set:
> 
> customers = api.customers
> 
> list(customers)  # __iter__
> 
> alice = customers[1]  # __getitem__
> 
> print(alice)  # __str__

This was my first thought seeing the third option as well, but...

> 
> alice.name = "Bob"  # __setattr__
> 
> del customers[42]  # __delitem__

do you want this sort of thing to update the upstream database directly?
Maybe there should be a commit() method on every object. Maybe not.

I imagine it would be best if the data is cached locally (i.e. alice =
customers[1] does a query, print(alice.name) does not). In this case you
probably want the local/database separation to be consistent for both
getting and setting things.

> del customers[alice]

Are you sure about this?

> 
>> #3 seems to be more "pretty" to me, but I did not find any "official"
>> recommendation online.

I'd like #3 if it had square brackets after .customers. Of the
suggestions as they are I prefer #2.



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