How to Build APIs in Python: 8 Popular Frameworks

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Application programming interfaces enable database linking and data sharing between applications. With APIs, two applications can communicate with each other without understanding how the other works. APIs can be easily scaled and used in all applications without having to rewrite new code for each new project.

It is therefore important that Python developers can create APIs using different frameworks to connect to other services and create a streamlined workflow. Python is one of the most versatile programming languages ​​designed to handle the rigors of API development. It is preferred for building APIs due to its ease of use, less complex syntax, and extensive library support.

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Top 8 Python Web Frameworks

flask resting

Flask Restful is a Python-based micro-framework used by developers to create web-based micro-services. It has a very lightweight module that facilitates quick creation and implementation of APIs. With just a few lines of code, you’re ready to initialize Flask and start using it to build your API.

Flask also allows APIs to be organized into modules for more complex APIs with multiple endpoints. With Flask, you can customize every aspect of your app by adding custom fields and inputs based on your data type.

Standby

Eve is a Flask and Cerberus based REST API framework that is used by developers to make API development easy and fast. It effortlessly creates highly customizable RESTful web services. The Eve framework is relatively minimalistic and best suited for small to medium-sized projects.

Eve supports a full range of REST and CRUD compliance, customizable endpoints, CORS, Cross-Origin, resource paging, sorting, resource sharing, HATEOAS, Neo4js, data validation, Elasticsearch, MongoDB and filtering.

The tool comes with advanced features like authentication, rate limiting, and caching. It also features community extensions that make it easy to integrate with SQL databases.

Django REST

Django is a Python-based REST framework frequently used by developers to build extremely fast and reliable APIs. The tool supports default templates, routing, forms, authentication and management tools. It features user-friendly constructs, loops, and conditionals to allow developers to quickly write many lines of new code.

Django integrates with MongoDB, DynamoDB, and SQLite, making it a powerhouse for managing huge datasets. It supports automatic URL routing and offers several built-in authentication policies. Django also has serialization that supports both ORM and non-ORM data sources.

It is the best tool if you don’t want to rework existing code or write new code as it comes with full documentation. There is also very active community support for newcomers.

Falcon

Falcon is a high-performance REST framework focused on quality control. It is used to build reliable application backends and microservices. Being WSGI compliant, Falcon is compatible with multiple servers and platforms, and it comes with an integrated server and debugger.

APIs built with Falcon have a simple, clean design that makes them lightweight. They also require minimal configuration and are easy to test and maintain.

Falcon Supports routing, built-in unit tests, secure cookies, URI utilities, and Python versions 2.6, 2.7, 3.4+, and 3.5+. It easily integrates with NoSQL and is compatible with Pypy.

Bottle

Bottle is a lightweight and simple WSGI micro web framework for API development. It is a single-file module that has no dependencies other than the standard Python library.

Bottle APIs are built without routing so they can be made as simple or as complex as needed. They also have a flexible structure that allows you to group APIs into sub-modules and middleware components.

The bottle supports Mako, Jinja 2, and Cheetah models. It has a built-in HTTP development server and also supports paste, fapws3, bjoern, gae, and cherrypy. The tool features smart routing accounts for cleaner, customizable, and logical URLs for requests and function calls.

TurboGears

TurboGears is a lightweight web framework built on the MVC pattern that builds APIs in Python and JavaScript. It acts as a full stack framework or as a micro framework.

TurboGears supports multiple template engines, but the primary one has always been a fully validated XML template engine. The current version of TurboGears runs on a Kajiki engine model which makes it faster than Django. Due to its speed, it implements many behind-the-scenes optimizations to deliver high-performance APIs.

Turbo supports template creation, paging, authentication and authorization, caching, a few databases, and schema migration.

FastAPI

FastAPI is one of the most efficient and powerful Python API frameworks. It is a complete web framework package in one. FastAPI has a compact coding structure that claims to allow code to be developed 200% to 300% faster than with other API development frameworks. It comes with other features like authentication, validation, and error handling.

The tool is mainly used to create asynchronous web applications, since it is based on asynchronous JavaScript and XML. FastAPI offers a Swagger UI for calling and testing APIs from a browser. It claims to reduce bugs caused by developer errors in code by 40% and it can minimize code duplication.

The tool supports an intuitive editor and VSCode/PyCharm with auto-completion. It comes with a built-in security and authentication and dependency injection system to automatically manage all dependencies.

FastAPI is fully compatible with Starlette and Pydantic and also supports application testing using PyTest, SQL databases, NoSQL databases and GraphQL.

Tornado

Tornado is a Python web framework and asynchronous networking library designed to handle high traffic. It has a non-blocking network input/output that allows many simultaneous connections. Tornado provides a separate SDK interface for building APIs. It is used to build lightweight web application backends and REST API server interfaces with backend business logic.

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Tornado can detect and apply source file changes by automatically reloading server connections. It includes an HTTP server and client interface as well as a WebSocket interface for two-way communication with WebSocket servers. It has the essential middleware functionality required to handle HTTP requests, templating, and routing.

The tool supports third-party login in conjunction with OpenID, OAuth, and Graph API. It also supports co-routines which makes it ideal for creating long polls and persistent connection based web backends.

Conclusion

APIs are growing in popularity and have become the backbone of the modern Internet. Choose the ideal framework for you according to the needs of your development project.

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