What is Postman?

100% serious question - what am I supposed to do with Postman?

I can add data and get a successful GET call to Twitter API and get back good data returns. Successful OAuthorization. Awesome! That’s literally the extent of my needs - an online form that checks userName against Twitter followers.

How do I connect that to my website? Am I supposed to copy code from Postman and embed? Maybe I’m making calls to Postman API as some kind of middle man?

The Javascript available to inspect is interesting, but the building of the actual headers (where all the action is) - I can’t find it.

I just don’t get what Postman is and where it fits in the pipeline, and the documents are written for coders. For the record, the fact this resource exists is incredible, I’m just an ape staring at a Texas Instruments Calculator and wondering if it will mash bananas efficiently…

There’s a YouTube channel that might be of use.
Lots of videos explaining all aspects of Postman.

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An API is part of the modern architecture for the web.

Instead of coding and connecting to a database directly, you connect via an API.

Those API’s have (well documented) standards attached. From the request type itself. REST\SOAP, the methods like GET, POST, DELETE to the data formats. JSON, XML.

Postman helps you design and test those API’s before you connect it all up to your application\website.

You say you want to create an online form. In what? If you are using straight up HTML\CSS & JavaScript you are going to have to learn some code.

There are some codeless options out there, but as I don’t know technology your website is based on, I can’t really go into too much detail.

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Those API’s have (well documented) standards attached

Some are less than well documented. Wix and Velo is particularly spare in its supporting documents - thorough but spare. And that is the environmental constraints I’m working under. That and my own ignorance.

The form function code is Javascript. I have some limited experience with HTML, CSS, and now Javascript. I’d rather be learning more Python, tbh, but here we are.

All the documentation for Postman seems written at the enterprise level. I’m not a team, I’m not looking to be sold solutions packages, you get the idea. I’m only here because I need to understand an underlying reality of this intricate and powerful juggernaut of API design, in order to use it to do the most simple basic singular function in its arsenal of heavy weapons. Like asking a Carrier group to fire a .22 starter pistol, basically.

So my question is: should I be looking to download code from the Postman interface to use on my site? Or should I be pointing API URLS at some custom Postman URL script I set up in the interface to create headers and make the desired GET call to the Twitter API servers, like some middleman in the pipeline?

Too much granulation. I need a basic question answered. Will definitely be using those resources though, so thank you.

I’m not talking about the documentation for a particular end point.

Those can be hit and miss depending on how good the developer is. Postman can help with that, as it has a documentation feature that you can link to any API’s that you are developing.

It won’t help with any off the shelf API’s that you are consuming.
That will be fully down to how good the developer\supplier is.

I’m talking about the standards that make up an API, like JSON, XML and those are well documented.

You are not going to get a good understanding of API design from here. There are courses for that. This tool helps you test and document your API’s, during and after development. It doesn’t do the development for you.

You will not be downloading code from Postman to use on your website, but it can help you craft and understand the requests that you will need to include in your code. What headers are needed, etc. What method is being used (POST\GET). You might be able to download examples for the products you are using from the internet, load them in Postman and then modify to your requirements saving on the complexity. But under the hood, you really need to learn the concepts I mentioned above. Soap vs Rest, XML vs JSON, etc.

In my mind, Postman is primarily a testing tool. (Testing is part of the development process though).