What Is the REST 9.1 Technical Preview?

Document created by moneil on Apr 25, 2016Last modified by scott.hurrey on Jan 29, 2018
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The REST 9.1 Technical Preview is an effort to get the Blackboard Learn REST Framework into the hands of as many developers as possible. Think of it as an early test version of the REST Framework for Learn 9.1 self-hosted and managed-hosted customers. This Technical Preview is the chance to try the APIs out, see how they work, what use cases are met, and provide Blackboard with feedback.

 

We have thoroughly tested the REST API framework against Learn SaaS and do not anticipate issues with Learn 9.1 SH/MH, but we have not conducted the same level of testing on Learn 9.1 SH/MH and bugs may surface during use. Therefore, we do not recommend that you run REST APIs against your production system at this time. We will provide notification when production use is acceptable.

 

For more information you may want to read about how the REST API Framework works.

 

 

What is it about the REST API Technical Preview that Makes the APIs Un-suitable for Production Use?

They May Contain Bugs

As we noted above, we took precautions to ensure a positive experience with the release of the REST API Technical Preview on Learn 9.1 SH/MH; still some issues may surface as the result of customers putting the APIs through their paces.

 

Learn 9.1 REST API TP Related Bug Fix Schedule

The REST APIs are updated per Learn SaaS cadence which is significantly faster than that of Learn 9.1 SH/MH. Also, in some cases, changes to core Learn code is necessary to support an API. In an effort to simplify delivery and support of Learn 9.1 SH/MH you can expect that REST API Technical Preview related bugs will be fixed in subsequent Learn releases.

 

Learn Enterprise REST API Feature Schedule

The REST APIs will be updated for Learn 9.1 SH/MH during Major Releases only. If after testing the REST APIs you require a more aggressive API change management schedule you may consider upgrading to one of the Learn SaaS Platforms.

 

The APIs May Change

The REST APIs are still in an early form and based on feedback and technical requirements may change prior to final release.

 

REST API Use Will be Monitored

In order to best determine API usage and maintenance requirements we collect data on the APIs being called and any generated errors. We do not collect data that is sent as part of the API request nor do we collect data contained in any response to a request.

 

 

How to Use the REST API Technical Preview Properly

If you’re still interested in trying the REST APIs, below are some pointers for how to best participate.

 

Test Your Applications Against the Developer Virtual Machine (DVM)

The DVM is the perfect test environment while you are developing your prototype or experimenting with the REST APIs. We have tools available which allow you to quickly populate the DVM with data for testing purposes.

 

Test Your Applications Against a Test Install of Learn

After you have prototyped your REST Application using the DVM you may continue testing with your TEST environment which may contain a more “real world” representation of your Learn data.

 

We do not recommend that you run REST APIs against your Production system at this time.                                                                    

 

 

And Most Importantly: Provide Feedback

While Blackboard will have data on what APIs are being used, any feedback you provide on how those APIs function and API Use Cases helps us make decisions regarding API design as we move forward. Blackboard shall have a royaltyfree,  worldwide, perpetual  license  to  use  or incorporate  into  Blackboard’s products  or  services any  suggestions,  ideas, enhancement requests, feedback, recommendations or other information provided by you.

 

Feedback may be provided via developer area of Blackboard Community in the REST Technical Preview discussion forum, an email to developers@blackboard.com, or in the case of a bug, a support case filed Behind the Blackboard.

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