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Next lesson:
Parsing JSON

Working with JSON

Lesson 1: What is JSON?

What is JSON?

  • JSON stands for JavaScript Object Notation.
  • It is a lightweight data-interchange format that is a textual representation of data that is usually in memory. It is native to JavaScript and should be recognizable to C-style programmers. It is very human-readable, and machines can easily parse and generate it.               
  • JSON is used to serialize data from memory to store it or to send it to a different application. In other words, to interchange data. Its format is common and recognizable to programmers, in that it has nested objects and arrays.
  • The JSON object is a set of name value pairs. Values are wrapped in curly brackets {}, are comma separated, and can be strings, numbers, arrays or Booleans. Values can also be nested.

Comparing JSON to XML

  • JSON is a bit lighter to read
  • There are no open/close tags in JSON
    • The name of every element is listed just once in JSON
  • JSON supports arrays that XML does not
  • Both are human readable
  • Both are hierarchical (nested objects)
  • XML is more extensive, standardized and supported
  • JSON is quicker and less standardized
  • JSON is easier to parse
  • JSON is native to JavaScript

There are three ways to use JSON in DataFlex:

  1. cJsonObject
    • Manually parses and generates JSON
    • Will serialize or deserialize structs and arrays into JSON
  2. cJsonHttpTransfer
    • To communicate JSON over HTTP
  3. Web Services support
    • Have built in JSON support
    • Every web service made in DataFlex can be called using SOAP and XML, but the same service can also be called using JSON.
      • This is not Restful JSON services