WordPress REST API

I recently found out there’s a WordPress REST API under development, and from Andrew Nacin himself, no less. Apparently, it’s already in use in production by Wired and The New York Times, which came as an additional (positive) shock.

I’m somewhat known for my dislike of WordPress, but this partially redeems it in my eyes. Being able to write actually well performing content management tools for my helper apps without requiring clumsy and lengthy rewrites from the team that’s in charge of the publication house’s software seems almost too good to be true and managing content and being able to work on the phone would be a godsend.

I’ll be lobbying for an implementation of this API into SitePoint to happen as soon as humanly possible, but in the meanwhile, I’d like to hear your opinions on this. Did you try it out? Do you see it as a good move, a bad move? Do you consider yourself affected by this at all?


I don’t see how this API would allow for the existing flock of Wordpress plugins to do their thing. Once those are lost the baby has been lost with the bathwater.

I mean, I’m guessing the API gets information into and out of the WP database without using the WP main code? If not what is it doing?

I can only see one usefulness of the API - building a bespoke website where WordPress is used for managing the site content (posts) and the API used to retrieve the content for use by the website.

A classical example will be a static website_esque generator where WP is used for managing the content and the API for getting the content.

Although this might be considered unnecessary because building such a site without dependency on WordPress is preferred.

You’re getting it wrong - nothing would change in the core. The plugins would work as usual. The usefuleness of the API is the ability to build your own post/user/content management interface, for example. So if I want to edit a post, I can do it from within my own tools - either desktop or mobile - in a fraction of a time because I can build a much better and more specific interface (for my uses) than WP’s core team ever could.

It’s basically just a way to use the WP database without having to have database access. Get a key, call URLs to do your actions, and you can build anything on top of your WP-run website. That’s the real power here.

It didn’t occur to me you were talking about replacing the admin side of the system. The admin side of Wordpress and its user friendly nature is it’s only strength. The front end is utter crap. Theme coding is a nightmare thanks to “The Loop” Why would I want to replace the systems only (marginally) redeeming feature? At that point just use a real CMS like Drupal.

You obviously haven’t used WP in enterprise settings :slight_smile: It’s a whole lot of awful.

I’d go with another CMS (not Drupal, though), but converting a base of over a hundred thousand posts into something compatible with another CMS isn’t an easy matter. I have a problem with the interface and its performance, setup and logic, and I’d love to be able to replace and/or improve it, regardless of other people who might like it. For them, nothing changes. For me - with the API I can build a better UI and a more streamlined process over the weekend, and it’ll benefit me in many workhours per week for months or years to come. Win, win and win.

I would think ESPN would count as Enterprise, so yes I have.

The demands of Enterprise scale pretty much insure anything you use is a headache, and we have to use a lot of custom code to keep our live servers in sync with staging and deploy. It’s a major hassle WordPress was never designed for, making it an even larger headache, and its anything but user friendly. I wasn’t referring to those sorts of corner cases though. I was referring to the more modest outright blog sites WP was meant for.

I already use Wordpress admin to add/manage posts, and custom db queries to display the content without using the wp front-end. This is a step in the right direction IMHO.

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Indeed, it’s often used for more than it’s supposed to.

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