DreamFactory: Offering RESTful APIs Automatically through Open Source Platform

Bill Appleton, CEO
With application programming interfaces (APIs) playing a critical role in building and operating mobile device, Web, and Internet of Things applications, development teams must focus considerable effort on building RESTful APIs so these modern applications can securely connect with back-end data sources. However, a costly part for every individual project is that the back-end team is tasked with creating new REST APIs for each application. Developing RESTful APIs often takes months for each application. In fact, Gartner estimates that approximately two-thirds of the cost of enterprise mobile application development projects is in securely integrating the application with back-end systems. Addressing this challenge, DreamFactory, an enterprise company, offers a pre-built, open source REST API back-end that automatically generates REST APIs for any back-end data source, dramatically cutting the costs and risks of modern application development.

DreamFactory provides a pre-built, open source REST API back-end that can be installed on any server and connected to any data source to streamline modern application development

Based in Campbell, CA, DreamFactory offers an open source REST API back-end instead of offering Back-end-as-a-Service (BaaS). “DreamFactory REST API software can be installed on any server or cloud and connected to any data source, providing more flexibility and control than SaaS offerings. The platform automatically provides reusable REST APIs for each application, cutting months of development time for each project,” says Bill Appleton, CEO, DreamFactory.

To further speed development, the DreamFactory platform offers interfaces to popular development frameworks. “DreamFactory generates a Client SDK interface for HTML5 frameworks such as jQuery and AngularJS, and a code library for native applications on iOS and Android,” delineates Appleton.
The platform supports back-end data sources such as SQL, NoSQL, file storage, and external services. DreamFactory also runs on Platform-as-a-Service systems such as IBM Bluemix, Pivotal, Helion, and Heroku. DreamFactory mobilizes legacy SQL data securely via support for proven enterprise identity management technologies such as LDAP, Active Directory, and OAuth. “If a mobile application is built on an existing SQL database, DreamFactory enables teams to instantly get over 40 secure, customizable RESTful API services for their applications,” says Appleton. With automatically generated REST API services, development teams can focus on building their applications rather than APIs. “DreamFactory also handles complex server-side tasks including user management, access controls, and push notifications,” he adds.

In one instance, a global security company, Maxwell Lucas, needed to build a mobile application that would provide enterprise customers and government agencies with access to fast-changing travel-risk information. Rather than spending time on building APIs, they used DreamFactory as their REST API back-end, saving them over $100,000 and cutting overall development time from months to weeks. “By using DreamFactory, the client’s REST APIs to legacy data sources and external web services were automatically built, so they could focus resources on building the front-end application,” adds Appleton. In another instance, Solution Family, a software consulting firm, needed a secure and efficient way to connect industrial IoT equipment to a back-end database that could be hosted anywhere (public cloud, private cloud, or traditional data centers), and accessed with a mobile application. They used DreamFactory to more quickly meet the requirements. The data was stored in a cloud database and the mobile app enables building managers to know details about the machines in the building.

In addition to the APIs, DreamFactory provides granular security controls, advanced scripting and customization capabilities, and live API documentation. DreamFactory is also introducing DreamFactory Enterprise, a management platform providing reporting, provisioning, and governance for multiple DreamFactory instances. “This will enable enterprises to cut costs for operation of critical infrastructure. It will also allow cloud providers and MSPs to provide SaaS hosting of DreamFactory for their customers,” concludes Appleton.


Campbell, CA

Bill Appleton, CEO

Provider of the DreamFactory open source REST API back-end, a platform providing RESTful services for mobile, Web, and IoT applications