Data on Google Trends” garnered from the past 5 years shows that GraphQL’s popularity has risen greatly. It is predicted to be among the most demanded languages in the world of programming in 2020. Therefore, understanding how it works would be an indispensable skill in today’s digital age.
Getting to know GraphQL
GraphQL is a server-side data query and runtime language for Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) which prioritizes the submission of client data according to what they have asked.
In essence, GraphQL is a language for querying databases from client-side applications. Regarding the backend side of development, GraphQL can specify to the API about the presentation of client data.
Facebook developed GraphQL in 2012. Their mobile applications have been using the Query Language ever since. Further, It is also currently used by a variety of large companies such as GitHub, Yelp, and others.
The language is also designed to make the API faster, more flexible and user-friendly for developers. As an alternative to REST, GraphQL allows developers to make requests that pull data from various sources in one API call.
In addition, the API manager will also be flexibly able to add and subtract fields without having to affect existing queries. Developers can also build APIs with whatever method they choose.
GraphQL possesses 3 main characteristics, namely:
- Enabling clients to specify precisely the data which they require.
- Easily collecting data from various sources.
- Use the GraphQL type system in order to describe data.
Benefits of Using GraphQL
- Well-defined Data Types. This reduces miscommunication between clients and servers.
- Enables APIs to expand without breaking existing queries.
- GraphQL comes with many extensions that are open source.
- Clients can request a list of available data types, making it ideal for auto-generating documentation.
- Clients get what they ask for without over fetching or receiving more data than needed.
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