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-   -   HLO Public API Debuts (http://forums.wolflair.com/showthread.php?t=64920)

rob October 16th, 2020 03:46 AM

HLO Public API Debuts
 
It's been a long time coming, but the HLO Public API has finally been released. It's now possible to extract character data on a one-time basis, as-needed via infrequent polling, or even through real-time notifications that provide a constant feed of every change made to a character.

At the moment, all of this yummy goodness is only available for Starfinder. We have one big piece left to complete for PF2, which we're working to have in place by the end of October. SR6 will take us a healthy amount of additional time, so there's no timetable on that yet.

There are two major components to the Public API. The first is the Export Format, and the second is the API itself.

The Export Format is a standardized, structured representation of HLO characters, which is consistent across all game systems. The specifics for each game system are obviously distinct, but the data model is identical, and the only differences are at the lowest level of the data (the actual properties and their values). So setting up a basic conduit from HLO to another tool need only be done once. The character details are game-specific, but everything else is the same.

The API itself is a web-based protocol that can be consumed in many different ways by a diverse array of tools. Single characters, multiple characters, and even campaigns can all be accessed. That access can be accomplished via explicit requests when needed or through continuous, live updates over websockets. This should make it possible to setup everything from one-time import feeds to dynamic integration with external tools. The character data surfaced by the API is in the Export Format.

Detailed documentation for the Public API will be found at the links below:
Public API Documentation @ https://docs.herolab.online/HLO-Public-API-Documentation.pdf
Export Format Documentation @ https://docs.herolab.online/HLO-Export-Format-Documentation.pdf

I'm sure there will be additional capabilities that will be wanted. And I'm sure there will be questions we overlooked in the documentation. So please use this thread as an initial place to submit those requests and ask those questions.

I hope this initial API gives everybody the core functionality to get started integrating HLO with your favorite tools. If there's something important we haven't included, we'll get it added.

Thanks!

WatersLethe October 16th, 2020 06:47 AM

Really excited for this going forward!

Dragnmoon October 16th, 2020 01:19 PM

So this allows developers of the online tabletop apps to access HLO? Any word of any of those developers doing that?

Roadie October 19th, 2020 06:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dragnmoon (Post 291427)
So this allows developers of the online tabletop apps to access HLO? Any word of any of those developers doing that?

I haven't heard of any yet, but there's some platforms that have plugins that anybody can build, like Foundry VTT, which would make it straightforward for fans to make integrations there.

From looking at the API doc, it also looks like it would also be pretty straightforward to make desktop apps, or client-side web apps, that use the API to provide whatever functionality using the character data.

rob October 21st, 2020 09:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dragnmoon (Post 291427)
So this allows developers of the online tabletop apps to access HLO? Any word of any of those developers doing that?

It hasn't even been out for a week yet, and it hadn't even been out 12 hours when you posed this question. There's quite a bit to digest and implement with the API, so a little patience is called for. Let's see where things stand after folks have a chance to really dig in and make some headway with it. :)

Quote:

Originally Posted by Roadie (Post 291477)
I haven't heard of any yet, but there's some platforms that have plugins that anybody can build, like Foundry VTT, which would make it straightforward for fans to make integrations there.

That's exactly the idea. We provide a clean way to get the data out. Other tools provide a clean way to get the data in. Then it's a matter of writing the translation layer between the two tools.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Roadie (Post 291477)
From looking at the API doc, it also looks like it would also be pretty straightforward to make desktop apps, or client-side web apps, that use the API to provide whatever functionality using the character data.

I couldn't have said it better myself. That was our goal with the API. :)

Dragnmoon October 21st, 2020 11:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rob (Post 291507)
It hasn't even been out for a week yet, and it hadn't even been out 12 hours when you posed this question. There's quite a bit to digest and implement with the API, so a little patience is called for. Let's see where things stand after folks have a chance to really dig in and make some headway with it. :)

Sorry assumed you guys would be talking to the VTT companies in the background, seemed like the smart thing to do while working on this project so it could be implement as quick as possible.

I guess I was wrong.

Edit: That all said I am not part of your company so I don't know what it would take to get something like that done.

Farling October 22nd, 2020 01:28 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dragnmoon (Post 291508)
Sorry assumed you guys would be talking to the VTT companies in the background, seemed like the smart thing to do while working on this project so it could be implement as quick as possible.

This announcement is really for the VTT companies, not for the end-users.

rob October 22nd, 2020 02:28 AM

To the best of my knowledge, the VTT companies are small outfits like us. As such, they primarily rely on tech-savvy fans for doing this sort of stuff, just like we do. So this is equal parts an announcement for the VTT companies and for the tech-savvy fans that are most likely to dive in with this stuff. In other threads, key contributors to at least two VTTs have said they were anxiously waiting for the availability of the API to get started, and another has emailed me directly about it. We just need to give them the chance to get that work underway. :)

H2Os October 22nd, 2020 07:20 AM

According to Foundry Starfinder discord, someone is working on something.

BoomerET November 8th, 2020 10:28 AM

I've started a converter for Fantasy Grounds. It takes the JSON of a character and creates the XML that can then be imported into FG. It only does basic things right now. Skills, Abilities, personal information (homeworld, name, gender, etc.)

You can find my code here:
https://github.com/BoomerET/hlosf2fg

At this moment, I'm thinking of moving over to the API. Looking at docs.

Dave


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