Breaking changes

Breaking changes regarding APIs

Changing the request format

This includes the following type of changes:

• Renaming the endpoint • Removing an existing method (POST, PUT etc.) • Renaming a field used in the request (either mandatory or optional) • Updating the structure or signature of the request • Making a parameter as required (which was previously not required) • Modifying the data type of an existing field • Changing the supported filtering on an existing endpoint • Updating the URL structure of an existing endpoint • The addition of a new feature that will change the purpose of an existing field • The addition of a new validation or updating an existing validation to an existing resource • Modifying the request logic related to pagination

Doing any of these updates will require the consumer to update their API requests in order to adapt to the change(s).

Changing the response format

This includes the following type of changes:

• Updating the structure of the response (including the pagination info) • Renaming a field used in the response • Modifying the data type of an existing field • Changing the response code • Changing error types or the structure of the error message

Doing any of these updates will require the consumer to update their API response handling logic in order to adapt to the change(s).

Changing the event format

This includes the following type of changes:

• Renaming the event • Removing an event • Changing the type of the event • Changing the event payload (this is actually bound to the same rules as changing the response)

Doing any of the above changes, consumers will have to modify their code in order to cope with the event update(s).

Changing the authentication type or authorization scopes

Changing how consumers can authenticate to use our services or updating any of the existing authorization scopes (by limiting the scope; expanding the scope is not a breaking change) will require the consumers to change the way they are consuming our services in their own applications.

Changing rate limiting rules

Changing the rate limiting information in the header or implementing rate limiting for the first time will most likely require consumers react by: • Adapting their request patterns to cope with the updated limit • Changing their subscription cope with the rate limit update.

Changing request or response caching strategies

Changing any of the policies or backend logic related to the request or response caching will definitely affect part of the consumers (especially the ones that expect their data to be current).

Changing components that are loose or tightly coupled

In the scenario where we have one or more components that are not completely de-coupled, we may encounter a scenario where changing one of the components (even if this were a non-breaking change) would introduce a breaking change to one or more of the coupled components, which of course need to be updated to a new version.

So, in this scenario, all of the involved coupled components would need to be upgraded to a new major version.

Changing testable class hierarchies

Changing the inheritance chain or prototype chain of an object is the same as changing its Type. As such, any consumer that inspects the type of an object, either declaratively as a Type annotation or imperatively with something like “instance of”, will need to change their code in order to consume the new class definition.

Breaking changes regarding ontology (draft)

Renaming classes

Renaming classes affects Context URLs and @type properties of JSON files, so it affects data, where respective class is used.

Moving classes in hierarchy

Re-parenting classes will affect Context URL since we generate Context URL based on hierarchy currently.

Renaming properties

Renaming property will be breaking change if this property is used currently in files and data, since it will become incompatible with standard.

Linking properties to classes

Linking properties to classes might be breaking change in case this property is required. In this case existing records should be examined to be affected by a change.

Changing property types

During to development of standard we might simplify definitions on early stages and define more strict rules on data types over releases. Normally the most generic type is string and then we might define more strict value definition, for example decimal. In this case some property data might become invalid in case it included some additional data or used different locale.

Categorizing values of properties

Same as with changing property types we might define list of supported values to harmonize data. This might lead to some properties data to become invalid.

Changing document structure

We might introduce more complex structure of documents while extending data complexity. For example have more nested structure than just data object nest. This might lead some properties to be moved inside other properties/objects. This will be breaking change.

Validating data against JSON schema and JSON-LD

We might put more strict rules on data. Currently not all data in production is JSON-LD compatible and will cause failures during JSON-LD validations. We might review/restructure that data.

Delivering contexts as a library

Currently we have an approach where we have 1 Context per 1 Identity/DataProduct. Context is more general file than just definition of 1 class and we might move to Library approach in future. For example as it already done with Data Product contexts.

Introducing untyped objects

This item is linked with Changing document structure section. Increasing complexity of data might lead us to the need to structure properties inside document in groups. This can be achieved using untyped JSON objects. We do not need to create class for each structure we use to not overwhelm Ontology, but linear properties structure might become messy at some level.

Current Link approach was designed long time ago and contains several questionable decisions we might need to address in future. Since links are heavily used also in logic - this might lead to big rethinking and rework.

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