Resources supporting my talk at the Scala eXchange 2014
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Effective API design with Scala types

This repository contains resources that support my talk on API design.

The talk

You can see the full talk on the Skills Matter website. You'll need to register to view the video, but it is completely free. This talk was given at the Scala eXchange in London, on 8th December, 2014.

There are more details about the talk on my website.

This repository

This repo contains more complete versions of the source code examples that I used in the talk. Note that while this repo does compile, these are only examples. Hopefully they'll be helpful if you are trying to take a similar approach in your own work but do be aware that your requirements will be different. Think about your own types rather than simply copying these ones.

The source code is a simple Play application. The source code is in the app subdirectory and is split into 3 main parts.


This package contains SimpleController.scala, which gives the example of how an API might traditionally be written.


This package contains the version that has been converted to use Either as the fundamental type for the API. The Either type's behaviour takes care of our error handling so you'll see that the controller (SyncController.scala) is enormously simplified.


The async package contains the fully asynchronous implementation that I show at the end of the talk. This includes a custom ApiResponse type that wraps both Either and Future into a single type that can be used in for-comprehensions. The controller (AsyncController.scala) is very nearly identical to the synchronous version but we've managed to make the implementation non-blocking.

Models, etc

The models package contains a few type that are shared among the other packages.

The rest of the application is just a standard Play project.