API

"API" is an acronym for Application Programming Interface. It is a name used to refer to a special framework some web applications or services provide which allows a user to connect to the system and perform some number of discrete actions such as running functions, requesting data, or updating information.

Action

An "action" is the part of an API's URL "anatomy" that describes or names a function that is available for a user to invoke. The action comes after the endpoint such than a typical API request URL might look like: https://{host}/{endpoint}/{action}.

Call

A "call" is another name for a "request" or a communication sent by a user to the API, in the form of a URL string, which invokes a specific action on one particular endpoint, and may also include additional parameters or values.

DELETE

"DELETE" is one of the four HTTP "methods", typically used for removing records from a system.

Encryption

"Encryption" is the act of converting of obfuscating the original representation of something using an algorithm or sequence of steps that change the representation into something else entirely. Encryption may be one-way (meaning that once applied, it cannot be undone) or two-way (meaning that once applied, it can be undone).

Endpoint

An "endpoint" is the part of an API's URL "anatomy" that describes or names the domain of objects or functions that can be manipulated or invoked by calling specific actions available under the endpoint. The endpoint comes after the host value such than a typical API request URL might look like: https://{host}/{endpoint}/{action}.

GET

"GET" is one of the four HTTP "methods", typically used for retrieving or querying records from a system.

Hash

A "hash" is a single value (i.e., string, number, etc.) or potentially a combined/concatenated set of values that have been encrypted.

HTTP

"HTTP" is an acronym for hyper-text transport protocol. It is one of the key architectural components behind how web-based content on the internet is accessed through web browsers.

HTTPS

"HTTPS" is an acronym for hyper-text transport protocol secure. It is the same in principle and function as HTTP, but exists when data transmitted via HTTP is encrypted before it is sent between two communicating entities (i.e., a user requesting information from a web server).

JSON

"JSON" is an acronym for JavaScript Object Notation. It is a format for information, based on the JavaScript language, that is intended for consumption by a programmed function.

Method

HTTP provides support for four "methods" which each describe a type of result a user might want to achieve through a given communication with a web server or API. The four methods are: "GET" (for retrieving data), "PUT" (for inserting data), "POST" (for updating data), and "DELETE" (for removing data).

Parameter

A "parameter" is like a variable added to an API request that provides additional information, instruction, or the necessary value the target action is supposed to utilize. Parameters come after the action value such than a typical API request URL might look like: https://{host}/{endpoint}/{action}?parameter1=value1&parameter2=value2.

POST

"POST" is one of the four HTTP "methods", typically used for updating existing records in a system.

Public / Private Key Encryption

Public / private key encryption is a form of encryption whereby a value (i.e., string, number, record of information, etc.) someone wishes to allow others to prove the authenticity of (i.e., proving it came from the original person) is encrypted using a one-way hashing algorithm. This hash is created using a non-secret value (the public key) as well as a second secret value (the private key) which is known only to the party encrypting the information and given to any party who wishes to validate the authenticity of the information. The receiving party will get a copy of the original data and the public key. If this party also knows the private key, they will be able to re-create the hash value thereby proving it is authentic.

PUT

"PUT" is one of the four HTTP "methods", typically used for inserting or creating records into a system.

Resource

A "resource" is a name for the combination of an "endpoint" and "action" in an API's URL "anatomy". A resource would refer to the values that come after the host in this example: https://{host}/{endpoint}/{action}

Response

A "response" is the data that an API sends back to a user after it is called. The format of an API response is usually XML or JSON.

REST

"REST" is an acronym for Representational State Transfer. It is a form of software architecture that is primarily used for web service design. The World Wide Web (WWW) is itself based on REST.

Request

A "request" is the call or a communication sent by a user to the API, in the form of a URL string, which invokes a specific action on one particular endpoint, and may also include additional parameters or values.

SOAP

"SOAP" is an acronym for Simple Object Access Protocol. It is a form of software architecture used for web service design, like REST.

URL

"URL" is an acronym for Uniform Resource Locator. The URL is the unique address for any object or function that can be accessed or invoked on the web.

Web Service

Web Service is a more generic name than API for referring to a special framework some web applications provide which allows a user to connect to the system and perform some number of discrete actions such as running functions, requesting data, or updating information.

XML

"XML" stands for Extensible Markup Language. It is a language used for providing information as well as describing that information, such that programs can interpret data without really understanding the data itself.

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