For Starters

This post relies on the previous one, which covers the use of a Java class to consume RESTful data. By implementing this, we were able to pull data and assign it, in the example via a viewScope variable, into an xp:dataTable element. This post is basic, but shows how powerful this can be. Some implied aspects are:

  1. URL building to contain
    • the appropriate endpoint
    • URL query parameters
  2. authentication via
    • same domain
    • trusted domain (or public)
    • or authentication via basic auth or otherwise
  3. that you can properly handle the retrieved data

Handling the Data

Consistent formatting is key, which is why this may be an argument in favor of SOAP; the WSDL provides action and format definition before you even execute the GET(/etc). It also highlights the importance of having your RESTful API properly documented. A case in point is the Notes View from Domino Data/Access Services. If you want to repeat the response of a categorized set of data from a View, did you remember to account for the @category: true entry? Remember, DAS will basically just expose the NotesViewEntry contents, and category entries are valid and expected.

Also, especially in XPages, it helps to format/reformat your data. Since an xp:repeat control doesn’t inherently know how to iterate a com.google.gson.JsonObject, we need to account for that. My post on the basics had to have its gist updated in the sample XPage to reformat the JsonObject into a format that the Domino flavor of SSJS could understand. I used the fromJson method, which is handy and a part of XPages out of the box, but as as noted by Tommy Valand and others, needs a quick fix before you use it. For some time, I’ve been using using Douglas Crockford’s JSON2 library as an SSJS library, which achieves the same thing. So pick your poison and stick with it for consistency’s sake.

Authentication

My example below uses basic HTTP authentication. This was the easiest to roll and really just comes into play if you’re interacting with another server, outside of a trusted domain (or when your admins don’t want to do much with existing network topology). You’ll notice that I’m once again using an Apache Commons library for the Base64 encoding; isn’t open source great? To get it, you’ll need the Apache Commons Codec jar; I’m using version 1.9.

URL Computation

As you’ve probably caught on by now, a similar private method could/should be used for computing the URL which your REST consumer will interact with.

My Sample Java Consumer with Basic HTTP Authentication

Eric McCormick

Software Developer, for the web, full-stack, Node virtuoso, git master, Docker acolyte, DevOps neophyte, IBM Champion.

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