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InfoQ Homepage News OSRAM Sylvania Opens Lightify REST API to Developers

OSRAM Sylvania Opens Lightify REST API to Developers

OSRAM Sylvania recently announced that it is now offering the developer community an open REST API for Lightify that developers can integrate into their own iOS and Android apps and web sites. Lightify is an Internet of Things (IoT) combination of hardware, the cloud, and your mobile device. Using OSRAM's free iOS and Android apps, you can control the light settings of your Lightify LED lights from wherever you have access to your mobile service.

For example, recently Lightify was used to Add Color to the Eurovision Song Contest: seven landmarks in Stockholm, Sweden were bathed in colors that represented how the songs appealed to television viewers watching the song competion. Some of the lighted landmarks were viewable on a live video stream.

The Lightify API, which was orginally developed to bring users OSRAM's free apps, is available from two regional links: (for those in or near Europe), and (for those in or near the United States, Canada, and Australia). For clarity, I'll note that all the Lightify API information I describe below (as well as the links) refer to the latter site.

The Lightify API site provides:

  • Home API Details
  • Sample Application
  • User Guideline

The Home API Details link provides a link to the LIGHTIFY API (REST) document, which describes Resources (API endpoints and methods) and Data Types (JSON).

Clicking the Sample Application link brings up the Apache License, Version 2.0. After you scroll down and click the "I Agree" button, the site thanks you for accepting the license agreement and lets you download the software. The sample application software is available in three formats (all of which are downloaded as zip files):

  • Windows(EXE): a Windows application, LightifyApp-1.0.0.exe; running this invokes Java (you'll have to upgrade if your Java version is too old) to launch the sample app.
  • JAR: a Java Archive file, LightifyApp-1.0.0.jar; this is a convenient starting point for developing your own Lightify apps or web site.
  • Source Code: the file uncompresses to produce the LightifyApp subdirectory; this directory includes a src subdirectory, along with files OSRAMlicense.txt, pom.xml, and userconfig.yaml

The User Guideline link loads a five-page PDF file, "LIGHTIFY Home: Cloud REST API Getting Started." This document provides additional detail on the Lightify API, along with example calls and results, and "popular commands."

If you're considering developing your own Lightify application, study the OSRAM License (file OSRAMlicense.txt) first. This document contains the "LIGHTIFY Home: Cloud REST API Usage Terms" that you have to agree to in order to utlize the Lightify API. The key statements for developers are in section "I. License Grant and Use Policy":

When developing Your App, please ensure that polling is used sparingly in order to minimize unnecessary network traffic, i. e. ensure that (i) Your App only polls in case of active use of Your App, (ii) polling is discontinued after maximum fifteen (15) minutes if the active use has been stopped and (iii) Your App does not poll more than once every three (3) seconds on average per gateway.

Developers are free to use the Lightify API in new applications. However, since all Lightify apps will access OSRAM's Lightify Cloud for free, the open offer of the API to developers can only be maintained if the new apps apply self-imposed throttling in use of the API. The throttling applies to a single user of your app: the app they download must include the specified throttling. There is no limit at present on the cumulative access to the Lightify Cloud by all users of your app.

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