Need some start help creating an app

Shopify Partner
91 0 1

I wonder if somebody would be willing to help me with some basic questions about creating an app via my email instead of here at the forum?
If so please mail me at info@manmade.se

Thanks.
Claes

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Shopify Staff
Shopify Staff
582 0 45

It would be preferable to keep the conversation on the forum such that if someone else has another question they can actually see the answer.

What in particular are you having a problem with when trying to build out your application?

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Shopify Partner
91 0 1

Hi Chris
I guess I´m missing something big here, but I don´t understand what an app is, is it just a .liquid page or set off .liquid pages?
Am I suppose to rebuild the shop I created, to an app?
And where do I create them, in the template editor or on my computer and then upload them to shopify?
Is there a very basic sample somewhere, a "Hello World"?
In the app settings what is Application Callback URL (required), Preferences URL, Support URL - are they links to shopify or at my own server?

As you can see, I really don´t get it :-)

The app I´m planning to build is very simple, it needs to add some script tags in the theme.liquid file, add a javascript file to the assets, then the shop owner needs to be able to upload 5 images to the assets, thats it. How and where do I start?

Thanks.
 

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Shopify Partner
30 0 8

You can do all those things (edit theme.liquid, add javascript file to shop assets, and let shop owner upload five images to the theme) without the use of an app. Just go in the theme editor and edit away on your customer's store. If you want the customer to be able to choose which five images they want to display, you can do a file upload in the theme settings (look at any theme that has an image carousel for an example) so that the shop owner can go into the theme settings for your theme and upload/change which images are displayed.

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Shopify Partner
91 0 1

Thanks Charlie
But I want to make an app out of it, not only to use in my test shop.
Where do I start?

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Explorer
127 0 15

Hi Claes,

An app is an application, written in whatever language, sitting on a web-facing server that you own. It interacts with Shopify via their web API. There are a bunch of bindings for interfacing with, written in a bunch of different languages; my personal favorite is the Perl API (because I wrote it, and it has a huge bunch of additional features that the other bindings don't have, like full reflection and being able to very easily generate and work with reasonable mock data so you can do actual testing), but there's also a ruby gem, a python file which makes things a bit easier, as well as java and javascript bindings, and a whole ton of others.

People install apps by going through the app install process, detailed in the API docs; essentially it's an OAuth authentication; when everything's said and done, you'll have an access token, which you can then use to modify these people's stores, via HTTP requests. 

Once you understand this, the application callback url, preferences and support urls make more sense; they're basically just URLs pointing to the server where your app is hosted.

 

So basically, to start, I'd say create an app in your partner dashboard, and note the information. Then, pick a language, webserver and webserver package to use. I use Perl and Nginx + Catalyst for this; a lot of people use Ruby and Nginx + Rails. Some people use Python and Apache + Django. I'm sure someone, somewhere has probably used C and FastCGI (you could probably serve up a lot of requests this way, mind you). Set up your webserver somewhere, either on a Heroku server, an amazon aws server, or even one of your own machines you have sitting in your living room. You can even, for the first little bit, have a local server, hosted on the desktop you're currently working on (you can even set the callback url to localhost). 

Once you've done this, and you've got a skeleton app running (hello world on your webserver), you can start to interact with Shopify. Try getting a basic process for installation up and running, as detailed here to get your API key. From there, you should be able to modify your store as you see fit, using your chosen language's shopify bindings.

 

 

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Shopify Partner
91 0 1

Hi Adam and thanks a lot.

Ok I thought that it was .liquid files that was upload to shopify, packed as zip files and executed when somebody installed the app :-)

So I can use my microsoft server, jquery,html and javascript to build the app and to autenticate.

I guess it is like the facebook api!? They use oauth authentication.

Well I guess I just have to test and see how it goes, thanks again Adam.

 

If somebody have some more input I appreciate it.

 

 

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