|By Paul Horan||
|September 22, 2013 07:45 AM EDT||
|Language||C#, Java, or Objective-C|
|Platform||iOS, Java for Android, Java ME for Blackberry, .Net Framework for Windows, .Net Compact Framework 3.5 for Windows Mobile|
|Mobile Server||Select the SMP server where the MBO model has been deployed.|
|Server Domain||This should correspond to the Application name in the SMP Control Center|
|Page Size||Controls the size of the data page in the remote database. Do not select a size that is smaller than is required for a single row.|
|Destination||Generate into a project folder, or into a specific folder on the file system.|
|Clean up...||This completely ERASES the contents of the destination folder before code generation, so USE WISELY|
The key point to remember when using the Object API is that all operations are performed against the local device database, including MBO object queries. No data is exchanged between the device and the SMP server (and ultimately the backend EIS or database resource) until the application calls the Synchronizeor startSynchronize API method (startSynchronize is the asynchronous, non-blocking version of the method). The placement of this method call is totally up to the requirements of the application. To simulate an "online" environment, place the synchronize call immediately after any CUD (Create/Update/Delete) transaction, so that the device immediately sends the transaction to SMP. To function "offline", just call submitPending to record the transactions locally, and delay the Synchronize call until the user clicks a button, or a live connection is detected.
OData, or the Open Data Protocol, has emerged as the primary protocol for data exchange across the web. OData operates somewhat like SQL, but instead of querying a relational database, the endpoint is a REST-based web service URL, and the application uses standard HTTP verbs like GET, POST, PUT, and DELETE to interact with the service endpoint. The protocol defines specific command modifiers, like $select, $filter, $orderby, and $expand to retrieve specific elements from the endpoint URL. Data returned from the endpoint is formatted in either JSON or XML, using the AtomPub schema.
SAP has identified OData as a strategic direction for the entire portfolio of products, and the OData SDK provides a comprehensive set of API's for securely accessing OData endpoints from native mobile device applications. The OData SDK is delivered as a set of static runtime libraries on the iOS, Android, and Blackberry platforms. The MBO model is not used with OData applications, and there is no code generation step required.
The OData SDK consists of five major components and classes.
Parses and generates valid OData protocol messages to/from native objects. It eliminates the need for mobile developers to work with the low-level details of the OData protocol directly. Functionalities supported by this component include:
- Parsing OData XML structures to native OData objects
- Validating OData XML during parsing by checking the existence of mandatory fields and structures
- Providing easy access to all OData fields and structures via the objects resulting from the parsing
- Building OData XML structures from native OData objects
The runtime cache is responsible for storing and accessing OData related objects in the memory of the device for quick and easy access. Functionalities supported by this component include:
- Storing/accessing OData objects in the memory (both metadata and application data)
- Searching for OData entries in memory using their searchable fields
- Managing the size of the cache
Implements a convenient and secure storage of data on the device. Mobile applications can access the locally stored data even when network connection is unavailable. Functionalities supported by this component include:
- Storing objects and raw data on the physical storage of the device
- Easy and quick access of the stored objects and raw data
- Data encryption for sensitive data
Implements standard SAP logging, tracing and error handling to enable end-to-end supportability from client to back-end. Functionalities supported by this component include:
- Common exception and error handling
- Event logging
- Tracing (SAP Passport)
This connectivity layer handles all connectivity related tasks, hides the complexity of the communication at transport level, and provides an easy to use API to the applications. Productive enterprise applications must use SAP Mobile Platform for connectivity for all enterprise use cases. For development and demo purposes, the SDK also provides a possibility to use HTTP or HTTPS. Functionalities supported by this component include:
- Synchronous and asynchronous HTTP request handling
- Supported authentication are:
- X509 certification
- SSO token/cookie
- Basic authentication (user/password)
- Timeout handling
- Compressed payload handling
- Request types as supported by OData Protocol
- Connection pools for optimal performance
The OData SDK provides basic persistence capabilities, but these are not to
The key step in setting up an OData SDK application is to create the Application ID in SAP Control Center, and define it as an "OData" type. That dialog box is shown below, with sample data. Note the Application Endpoint setting. That URL references the root "service document" of the application's OData endpoint. Making this URL an attribute of the Application adds a layer of security, since only registered Application Connections will be able to access that endpoint through the SMP proxy. There is no need to expose that OData URL outside the corporate firewall. The mobile application retrieves the endpoint URL as a property of the Application, once a successful connection is made to the SMP server, and then provides that on all subsequent OData queries and updates.
Refer to the OData SDK Developer Guide for more thorough instructions on the use of the API within your application.
Note: OData is inherently an HTTP-based protocol, but with SMP 2.x, OData SDK apps communicate with the SMP server using the proprietary "iMO" messaging protocol. It's essentially "HTTP over iMO". WIth SMP 3.0, this will be changed to use standard HTTP(s) for communication.
HTTP REST API
The HTTP REST API is the most recent addition to the catalog of programming interfaces. However, it's a little misleading to call it a traditional "API", since there are no client-side libraries to include with the application code, and no language-specific methods to invoke for implementation. With the release of SUP 2.2, an HTTP listener was added to the SMP server, and several REST endpoints were exposed on the open port (which is 8000, by default). These REST services perform basic SMP administration and security functions. This "decoupling" of client and server platforms allows SMP applications to be written in any language, on any platform, using any IDE. As long as the mobile application is capable of performing an HTTP call to a REST endpoint, it can be secured and managed by the SMP server.
The REST API provides four basic capabilities to a mobile application.
- Registration: Creating an Application Connection and registering the device ID and type to SMP;
- Authentication: The Application is linked to a specific Security Configuration, and any connection must satisfy the authentication requirements. Anonymous application connections are also supported;
- Native Push Notification: The mobile app can register for push notifications through APNS, GCM, or Blackberry BES
- Configuration: The mobile app can call SMP to persist specific application settings or preferences;
All the calls to the API are performed by making HTTP calls to a REST endpoint, which is defined on the SMP server. (If the Relay Server or a 3rd-party reverse proxy server is in place, the URL of the endpoint should reference that URL instead.) For example, to register an Application Connection, the mobile application simply needs to perform an HTTP POST as shown below. The body of the post contains the minimum default XML content.
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<entry xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2005/Atom" xmlns:m="http://schemas.microsoft.com/ado/2007/08/dataservices/metadata"
In the above URL, domain:port would correspond to either the SMP server and port, or the relay server, on their respective HTTP or HTTPS ports. Theappid would be the Application ID as defined in the SAP Control Center. Once successfully registered and authorized, application data can be retrieved from the OData endpoint with any HTTP request and JSON/XML parsing logic. You can also create additional OData Proxy connections in SCC, creating a "whitelist" of valid endpoints for the application to use.
The SCC dialog for registering a REST API app is exactly the same as the OData figure shown above (except, of course, that you select "REST API" from the dropdown list...) so I won't duplicate that here. Suffice it to say that the Application must exist in SCC as a REST API app before any registration and authentication attempts can be made against it.
As far as online vs. offline goes, I'll call this one "custom", meaning that while a live data connection must be present for any interaction with the SMP server (device registration, authentication, etc.), offline could be supported by any intrepid developer that wants to build and deploy their own SQLite or UltraLite database for the remote device, write the application to persist transactions into that local database, then write the synchronization logic to keep that database in sync with the backend EIS. Don't forget to manage the entire synchronization session as a restartable, ACID-compliant unit... (All of that is exactly what the MBO model and the Object API provides for you in a single mouse click.)
One final note on the HTTP REST API: if you are developing a native app in Objective-C or Java against an OData endpoint, then the Persistence, Caching, and OData Parser libraries from the OData SDK (as mentioned in the section above) may be leveraged in your project. Just include the corresponding SDK libraries in your project, and those functions will be available to your application. The Registration and Transport layer libraries would not be applicable in this use case.
Refer to the SMP Developer Guide: REST API Applications for more detailed information on programming to this API.
Here's a quick wrapup of the four options presented above, so you can choose the most appropriate architecture for your SMP 2.x application.
|API||Supported Languages/Platforms||Uses MBO's?||Supports Offline?|
|Native Object API||
iOS: Xcode and Objective-C
Blackberry: Java ME
Windows: .NET Framework 3.5
Windows Mobile: .NET Compact Framework 3.5
iOS: Xcode and Objective-C
Blackberry: Java ME
|HTTP REST API||Any||No||Custom
Samsung VP Jacopo Lenzi, who headed the company's recent SmartThings acquisition under the auspices of Samsung's Open Innovaction Center (OIC), answered a few questions we had about the deal. This interview was in conjunction with our interview with SmartThings CEO Alex Hawkinson. IoT Journal: SmartThings was developed in an open, standards-agnostic platform, and will now be part of Samsung's Open Innovation Center. Can you elaborate on your commitment to keep the platform open? Jacopo Lenzi: Samsung recognizes that true, accelerated innovation cannot be driven from one source, but requires a...
Oct. 23, 2014 11:45 PM EDT Reads: 2,326
SYS-CON Events announced today that Red Hat, the world's leading provider of open source solutions, will exhibit at Internet of @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Red Hat is the world's leading provider of open source software solutions, using a community-powered approach to reliable and high-performing cloud, Linux, middleware, storage and virtualization technologies. Red Hat also offers award-winning support, training, and consulting services. As the connective hub in a global network of enterprises, partners, a...
Oct. 23, 2014 11:30 PM EDT Reads: 1,489
P2P RTC will impact the landscape of communications, shifting from traditional telephony style communications models to OTT (Over-The-Top) cloud assisted & PaaS (Platform as a Service) communication services. The P2P shift will impact many areas of our lives, from mobile communication, human interactive web services, RTC and telephony infrastructure, user federation, security and privacy implications, business costs, and scalability. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Robin Raymond, Chief Architect at Hookflash Inc., will walk through the shifting landscape of traditional telephone a...
Oct. 23, 2014 08:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,391
SYS-CON Events announced today that Matrix.org has been named “Silver Sponsor” of Internet of @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Matrix is an ambitious new open standard for open, distributed, real-time communication over IP. It defines a new approach for interoperable Instant Messaging and VoIP based on pragmatic HTTP APIs and WebRTC, and provides open source reference implementations to showcase and bootstrap the new standard. Our focus is on simplicity, security, and supporting the fullest feature set.
Oct. 23, 2014 08:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,497
BSQUARE is a global leader of embedded software solutions. We enable smart connected systems at the device level and beyond that millions use every day and provide actionable data solutions for the growing Internet of Things (IoT) market. We empower our world-class customers with our products, services and solutions to achieve innovation and success. For more information, visit www.bsquare.com.
Oct. 23, 2014 08:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,464
How do APIs and IoT relate? The answer is not as simple as merely adding an API on top of a dumb device, but rather about understanding the architectural patterns for implementing an IoT fabric. There are typically two or three trends: Exposing the device to a management framework Exposing that management framework to a business centric logic • Exposing that business layer and data to end users. This last trend is the IoT stack, which involves a new shift in the separation of what stuff happens, where data lives and where the interface lies. For instance, it’s a mix of architectural style...
Oct. 23, 2014 07:45 PM EDT Reads: 1,457
SYS-CON Events announced today that SOA Software, an API management leader, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. SOA Software is a leading provider of API Management and SOA Governance products that equip business to deliver APIs and SOA together to drive their company to meet its business strategy quickly and effectively. SOA Software’s technology helps businesses to accelerate their digital channels with APIs, drive partner adoption, monetize their assets, and achieve a...
Oct. 23, 2014 06:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,450
From a software development perspective IoT is about programming "things," about connecting them with each other or integrating them with existing applications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Yakov Fain, co-founder of Farata Systems and SuranceBay, will show you how small IoT-enabled devices from multiple manufacturers can be integrated into the workflow of an enterprise application. This is a practical demo of building a framework and components in HTML/Java/Mobile technologies to serve as a platform that can integrate new devices as they become available on the market.
Oct. 23, 2014 06:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,460
SYS-CON Events announced today that Utimaco will exhibit at SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Utimaco is a leading manufacturer of hardware based security solutions that provide the root of trust to keep cryptographic keys safe, secure critical digital infrastructures and protect high value data assets. Only Utimaco delivers a general-purpose hardware security module (HSM) as a customizable platform to easily integrate into existing software solutions, embed business logic and build s...
Oct. 23, 2014 05:45 PM EDT Reads: 1,397
Connected devices are changing the way we go about our everyday life, from wearables to driverless cars, to smart grids and entire industries revolutionizing business opportunities through smart objects, capable of two-way communication. But what happens when objects are given an IP-address, and we rely on that connection, sometimes with our lives? How do we secure those vast data infrastructures and safe-keep the privacy of sensitive information? This session will outline how each and every connected device can uphold a core root of trust via a unique cryptographic signature – a “bir...
Oct. 23, 2014 05:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,313
Internet of @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley announced on Thursday its first 12 all-star speakers and sessions for its upcoming event, which will take place November 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in California. @ThingsExpo, the first and largest IoT event in the world, debuted at the Javits Center in New York City in June 10-12, 2014 with over 6,000 delegates attending the conference. Among the first 12 announced world class speakers, IBM will present two highly popular IoT sessions, which will take place November 4-6, 2014 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, Calif...
Oct. 23, 2014 01:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,485
Almost everyone sees the potential of Internet of Things but how can businesses truly unlock that potential. The key will be in the ability to discover business insight in the midst of an ocean of Big Data generated from billions of embedded devices via Systems of Discover. Businesses will also need to ensure that they can sustain that insight by leveraging the cloud for global reach, scale and elasticity.
Oct. 22, 2014 09:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,278
WebRTC defines no default signaling protocol, causing fragmentation between WebRTC silos. SIP and XMPP provide possibilities, but come with considerable complexity and are not designed for use in a web environment. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Matthew Hodgson, technical co-founder of the Matrix.org, will discuss how Matrix is a new non-profit Open Source Project that defines both a new HTTP-based standard for VoIP & IM signaling and provides reference implementations.
Oct. 22, 2014 01:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,477
SUNNYVALE, Calif., Oct. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Spansion Inc. (NYSE: CODE), a global leader in embedded systems, today added 96 new products to the Spansion® FM4 Family of flexible microcontrollers (MCUs). Based on the ARM® Cortex®-M4F core, the new MCUs boast a 200 MHz operating frequency and support a diverse set of on-chip peripherals for enhanced human machine interfaces (HMIs) and machine-to-machine (M2M) communications. The rich set of periphera...
Oct. 21, 2014 08:30 PM EDT Reads: 1,544
SYS-CON Events announced today that Aria Systems, the recurring revenue expert, has been named "Bronze Sponsor" of SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Aria Systems helps leading businesses connect their customers with the products and services they love. Industry leaders like Pitney Bowes, Experian, AAA NCNU, VMware, HootSuite and many others choose Aria to power their recurring revenue business and deliver exceptional experiences to their customers.
Oct. 21, 2014 06:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,413
The Internet of Things (IoT) is going to require a new way of thinking and of developing software for speed, security and innovation. This requires IT leaders to balance business as usual while anticipating for the next market and technology trends. Cloud provides the right IT asset portfolio to help today’s IT leaders manage the old and prepare for the new. Today the cloud conversation is evolving from private and public to hybrid. This session will provide use cases and insights to reinforce the value of the network in helping organizations to maximize their company’s cloud experience.
Oct. 21, 2014 05:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,482
The Internet of Things (IoT) is making everything it touches smarter – smart devices, smart cars and smart cities. And lucky us, we’re just beginning to reap the benefits as we work toward a networked society. However, this technology-driven innovation is impacting more than just individuals. The IoT has an environmental impact as well, which brings us to the theme of this month’s #IoTuesday Twitter chat. The ability to remove inefficiencies through connected objects is driving change throughout every sector, including waste management. BigBelly Solar, located just outside of Boston, is trans...
Oct. 21, 2014 09:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,687
Oct. 20, 2014 11:45 PM EDT Reads: 1,391
Predicted by Gartner to add $1.9 trillion to the global economy by 2020, the Internet of Everything (IoE) is based on the idea that devices, systems and services will connect in simple, transparent ways, enabling seamless interactions among devices across brands and sectors. As this vision unfolds, it is clear that no single company can accomplish the level of interoperability required to support the horizontal aspects of the IoE. The AllSeen Alliance, announced in December 2013, was formed with the goal to advance IoE adoption and innovation in the connected home, healthcare, education, aut...
Oct. 20, 2014 11:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,800
Oct. 20, 2014 09:45 PM EDT Reads: 1,369