Understanding HTTP



It feels like I’ve been in a thousand discussions about web APIs, and I’ve explained the same few things over and over in each of those discussions. It’s 2016, and at this point I expect developers to have a loose grasp on how the internet works.

But whenever I’m talking to someone I haven’t worked with before, experience tells me that I should apply the following filter:

“We have a rest api…” [I doubt it] “…that returns json…” [I’ll be the judge of that. 5050 it’s actually JSONP or something else] “…that’s horizontally scalable…” [definitely isn’t] “…and follows current web standards.” [lol okay]

I’m not going to go answer this here, but I may make this an interview question going forward. It doesn’t require any development to answer, and anyone with a reasonable grasp of how HTTP works will find at least 3 issues without breaking a sweat.

“Elite developer zen master ninja rockstars” will find more than 3 problems. Can you?