REST own action

It's ok to use the parameters to further "refine" your action, but just make sure that your custom action shouldn't really be a standard action of another resource. It could very well be that although your "network" action seems to be needed on a user resource, perhaps you're really stumbling upon a discovery of a new resource entirely.

What does the network action try to do? And if you *had* to stick to the seven RESTful actions, what action would "network" be and for what resource?

Those are the kinds of questions I ask myself whenever I feel like adding a custom action, and about half the time, I'm able to just declare a new resource and remove the custom action.



Actually, everything (authorizations, logins, search, ...) can be fit into the 7 REST actions. It's just sometimes hard to figure out what sort of resource do you need.

Is this URL correct?


or should it actually be


this always confuses me. Should the format extension always appear at very end of the URL, just before the query string. Before the semicolon before the custom action?

I think this was one of the reasons we changed it to / in edge rails. When we actually got to building real restful apps with custom actions, singleton resources, etc, it was clear using the semicolon wasn't working out (plus, safari won't send http basic auth with it). It should be /168/network.xml, which is a lot easier to grasp, provides a transparent migration to a singleton 'network' resource should it be necessary, and doesn't mess with caching.

Be careful, semicolon will be deprecated in Rails2.0

Oh thank goodness. Great move! I'm looking forward to the release of this. I like that idea so much better.

It also removes the confusion between




If you think about it they are both used to GET the form and not modify the resource. Yet "new" has a slash and "edit" has a semicolon.

So I would love to write this instead:


And this will also make custom actions (when they are necessary) feel more like first class citizens in the URL.

the network action return an xml files where the 'friends' of a user are described (friends_who_know_me and friends_i_know) one <Person>node for each friend and one <City> node for each friend.residence... it's a complete description of a user's network, which is built from user's relationships so it's a GET the network of a User....

Why don't you create a resource 'network' which returns your formatted xml? You could also add routes like 'network/fred/paris' ('network/:person/:location/') to GET from this resource only the friends of fred located in Paris.

I agree that it's a resource but not in the DB.... it's point I did not catch very well in RESTFul approach, it seems that all resources ARE ActiveResources... true or false ?

Resources are only a way to see some data on your network. It's like models: it could be directly linked to real data in your database or not. For example, I use an 'auth' resource for my login/logout actions which maps to cookies. login POST a cookie, is_logged_in? is a GET on a cookie etc.

My $0.02,

could be, but...... no route found to match "/users/168/network.xml" with {:method=>:get} no route found to match "/users/168;network.xml" with {:method=>:get}

only http://localhost:3000/users/168.xml;network is correctly executed...

The change was made in edge rails for Rails 2.0.

also how shoudl I write the URL in my rxml ?, I wrote :dataURL => "http://localhost:3000/users/#\{friend\.id\}\.xml;network?from=\#\{@user\.id\}&amp;level=\#\{@level\}&quot;

network_user_path(:id => friend, :from => @user, :level => @level) formatted_network_user_path(:id => friend, :from => @user, :level => @level, :format => :xml)