Learn API Technical Writing 2: REST for Writers
- 1.5 hours on-demand video
- 2 articles
- 21 downloadable resources
- Full lifetime access
- Access on mobile and TV
- Certificate of Completion
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- Understand the basics of how REST works.
- Understand the basics of authentication and authorization.
- Create reference documentation for REST requests.
- Students should have either taken the Udemy course "Learn API Technical Writing: JSON and XML for Writers" or else be very familiar with how to document JSON and XML.
- You will need a Word Processor (such as MS Word, Apple Pages, or Google docs). The Chrome browser is recommended for some of the exercises.
This is the second in a series of courses for technical writers who want to learn how to write API documentation. The first course is called "Learn API Technical Writing: JSON and XML for Writers", and it is recommended that you first take that course, unless you are very familiar with JSON and XML, and how to document them.
This course teaches how to document REST APIs. No programming experience is required, but technical writers with programming experience who want to know more about REST APIs will still find it useful.
What are APIs?
APIs (Application Program Interfaces) define how software systems talk to each other, and API documentation is a rapidly growing field. There is a strong need for writers who can understand APIs and explain them so that software developers can understand how to use them. API writers get to be in on the cutting edge of technology in high-paying positions.
What is REST?
REST (Representational State Transfer) is a popular style of web API, and it's used to communicate data between devices and servers. Different data is contained in different parts of the API requests and responses, and this course explains what those different parts are and how to document them.
What is in This Course?
By the end of the course, you will understand what REST is and how to read and document REST requests and responses. In this course you'll find:
- 12 videos that:
- Provide background information on REST APIs
- Break down REST requests into their various pieces with examples
- Show real-time, narrated writing of REST documentation
- Provide overviews of authentication and authorization for REST
- 7 hands-on exercises to lead you through making and documenting REST requests
- 7 short quizzes to keep you on your toes
- PowerPoint presentations as a resource for every video lecture
- A Microsoft Word document you can use as a template for REST reference material
The course takes approximately 3 hours and 30 minutes to complete, depending on how fast you are with the exercises.
- This course is designed for technical writers with experience writing end-user documentation and want to learn how to write API documentation. No prior programming or REST is required, but knowledge of JSON and XML is required.
- This course is also helpful for technical writers with programming experience who want details on best practices for documenting REST.
This introduction explains:
- What will be covered in the course
- What APIs are
- Why API documentation is important
This lecture covers what REST is. At the end, students should know:
- REST is a type of web API
- The difference between design patterns and protocols
- How RESTful APIs use HTTP, requests, responses, and resources
- How REST compares to SOAP
Note: This lecture is technically the most difficult. If you are finding it hard to understand, don't get discouraged. Just skip it and come back to it at the end.
This lecture covers authentication and authorization. At the end, students should understand:
- The difference between authentication and authorization
- What app keys are
- What OAuth is and a bit about how it works
- Generally, how to document authentication and authorization
This lecture covers tools for documenting and calling REST APIs. At the end, students should understand:
- How tools can help
- The differences between single source tools, content management systems, and autogenerated documentation tools
- What Markdown is
- How to use a REST client to make REST API calls