[Web-SIG] Announcing PathTo and DescribedRoutes for Python

Mike Burrows (@asplake) mjb at asplake.co.uk
Fri Feb 26 13:18:04 CET 2010

PathTo is a metadata-driven HTTP client that makes scripted server
interaction easy:

    >>> import path_to
    >>> app = path_to.open_app('http://example.com/', format='json')
    >>> app.login.post(credentials, expected_status=302)
    >>> product = app.products['Foo'].get(expected_status=200).parsed
    >>> product['description'] = 'Updated!'
    >>> app.products['Foo'].put(product, expected_status=302)
    >>> app.products['Foo'].get(expected_status=200).parsed['description']

The HTTP part comes by default from httplib2.

DescribedRoutes defines the underlying metadata ("ResourceTemplates").  It
is framework-independent (see note 1), but for Pylons there is provided a
WSGI middleware component that generates the metadata in JSON and friendly
text formats on demand from the routing specification (see note 2) and
supports discovery via link headers.


1. PathTo repo: http://bitbucket.org/asplake/path_to
2. PathTo on PyPi: http://pypi.python.org/pypi/PathTo/
3. DescribedRoutes repo: http://bitbucket.org/asplake/described_routes
4. DescribedRoutes on PyPi: http://pypi.python.org/pypi/DescribedRoutes/
5. An explanation of the above example (blogged) -


1. Framework-independent and language-independent - the system was
originally developed for Rails, and clients exist in Ruby and Javascript. 
It has been a while since interop has been tested in anger though.  In the
absence of server support, the PathTo client can be configured locally.

2. It assumes that routes are specified URI Template-style, e.g.
"/products/{product_id}" (this is unlikely to change) and it needs variables
to be named consistently in order to do a good job of inferring the resource
hierarchy (but the algorithm should improve over time).


mjb at asplake.co.uk

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