Wednesday, January 7, 2015

WebSockets vs REST: Understanding the Difference

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Sockets are a paradigm for handling networking, and the concept has been around for decades. Sockets were once a way to standardize networking input and output, much like an API does, so that regardless of the particulars of the hardware, applications could program to “sockets” and it would work with many different hardware implementations.

The idea behind a socket, is that it is a “port” through which data goes in and out of. Much like a real trading port for data, the socket itself is like the dock, it’s where exchanges are happening from the application standpoint. The socket itself is abstract and low level, and staying with the metaphor, many different ships, trains, and equipment can use it. We can call all of these Protocols.

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