Jamel  O'Reilly

Jamel O'Reilly


PureLayout: The Ultimate API for iOS & OS X Auto Layout

The ultimate API for iOS & OS X Auto Layout — impressively simple, immensely powerful. PureLayout extends UIView/NSView, NSArray, and NSLayoutConstraint with a comprehensive Auto Layout API that is modeled after Apple's own frameworks. PureLayout is a cross-platform Objective-C library that works (and looks!) great in Swift. It is fully backwards-compatible with all versions of iOS and OS X that support Auto Layout.

Writing Auto Layout code from scratch isn't easy. PureLayout provides a fully capable and developer-friendly interface for Auto Layout. It is designed for clarity and simplicity, and takes inspiration from the AutoLayout UI options available in Interface Builder while delivering far more flexibility. The API is also highly efficient, as it adds only a thin layer of third party code and is engineered for maximum performance.



The current release of PureLayout supports all versions of iOS and OS X since the introduction of Auto Layout on each platform, in both Swift and Objective-C, with a single codebase!

  • Xcode
    • Language Support: Swift (any version), Objective-C
    • Fully Compatible With: Xcode 7.0
    • Minimum Supported Version: Xcode 5.0
  • iOS
    • Fully Compatible With: iOS 9.0
    • Minimum Deployment Target: iOS 6.0
  • OS X
    • Fully Compatible With: OS X 10.11
    • Minimum Deployment Target: OS X 10.7

Using CocoaPods

  1. Add the pod PureLayout to your Podfile.
pod 'PureLayout'
  1. Run pod install from Terminal, then open your app's .xcworkspace file to launch Xcode.
  2. Import the PureLayout.h umbrella header.
  • With use_frameworks! in your Podfile
    • Swift: import PureLayout
    • Objective-C: #import <PureLayout/PureLayout.h> (or with Modules enabled: @import PureLayout;)
  • Without use_frameworks! in your Podfile
    • Swift: Add #import "PureLayout.h" to your bridging header.
    • Objective-C: #import "PureLayout.h"

That's it - now go write some beautiful Auto Layout code!

Using Carthage

  1. Add the PureLayout/PureLayout project to your Cartfile.
github "PureLayout/PureLayout"
  1. Run carthage update, then follow the additional steps required to add the framework into your project.
  2. Import the PureLayout framework/module.
  • Swift: import PureLayout
  • Objective-C: #import <PureLayout/PureLayout.h> (or with Modules enabled: @import PureLayout;)

That's it - now go write some beautiful Auto Layout code!

Manually from GitHub

  1. Download the source files in the PureLayout subdirectory.
  2. Add the source files to your Xcode project.
  3. Import the PureLayout.h header.
  • Swift: Add #import "PureLayout.h" to your bridging header.
  • Objective-C: #import "PureLayout.h"

That's it - now go write some beautiful Auto Layout code!

App Extensions

To use PureLayout in an App Extension, you need to do a bit of extra configuration to prevent usage of unavailable APIs. Click here for more info.


Releases are tagged in the git commit history using semantic versioning. Check out the releases and release notes for each version.

API Cheat Sheet

This is just a handy overview of the core API methods. Explore the header files for the full API, and find the complete documentation above the implementation of each method in the corresponding .m file. A couple of notes:

  • All of the public API methods are namespaced with the prefix auto..., which also makes it easy for Xcode to autocomplete as you type.
  • Methods that create constraints also automatically install (activate) the constraint(s), then return the new constraint(s) for you to optionally store for later adjustment or removal.
  • Many methods below also have a variant which includes a relation: parameter to make the constraint an inequality.


PureLayout defines view attributes that are used to create auto layout constraints. Here is an illustration of the most common attributes.

There are 5 specific attribute types, which are used throughout most of the API:

  • ALEdge
  • ALDimension
  • ALAxis
  • ALMargin available in iOS 8.0 and higher only
  • ALMarginAxis available in iOS 8.0 and higher only

Additionally, there is one generic attribute type, ALAttribute, which is effectively a union of all the specific types. You can think of this as the "supertype" of all of the specific attribute types, which means that it is always safe to cast a specific type to the generic ALAttribute type. (Note that the reverse is not true -- casting a generic ALAttribute to a specific attribute type is unsafe!)


- autoSetContent(CompressionResistance|Hugging)PriorityForAxis:
- autoCenterInSuperview(Margins) // Margins variant iOS 8.0+ only
- autoAlignAxisToSuperview(Margin)Axis: // Margin variant iOS 8.0+ only
- autoPinEdgeToSuperview(Edge:|Margin:)(withInset:) // Margin variant iOS 8.0+ only
- autoPinEdgesToSuperview(Edges|Margins)(WithInsets:)(excludingEdge:) // Margins variant iOS 8.0+ only
- autoPinEdge:toEdge:ofView:(withOffset:)
- autoAlignAxis:toSameAxisOfView:(withOffset:|withMultiplier:)
- autoMatchDimension:toDimension:ofView:(withOffset:|withMultiplier:)
- autoSetDimension(s)ToSize:
- autoConstrainAttribute:toAttribute:ofView:(withOffset:|withMultiplier:)
- autoPinTo(Top|Bottom)LayoutGuideOfViewController:withInset: // iOS only
- autoPinEdgeToSuperviewSafeArea: // iOS 11.0+ only
- autoPinEdgeToSuperviewSafeArea:withInset: // iOS 11.0+ only


// Arrays of Constraints
- autoInstallConstraints
- autoRemoveConstraints
- autoIdentifyConstraints: // iOS 7.0+, OS X 10.9+ only

// Arrays of Views
- autoAlignViewsToEdge:
- autoAlignViewsToAxis:
- autoMatchViewsDimension:
- autoSetViewsDimension:toSize:
- autoSetViewsDimensionsToSize:
- autoDistributeViewsAlongAxis:alignedTo:withFixedSpacing:(insetSpacing:)(matchedSizes:)
- autoDistributeViewsAlongAxis:alignedTo:withFixedSize:(insetSpacing:)


+ autoCreateAndInstallConstraints:
+ autoCreateConstraintsWithoutInstalling:
+ autoSetPriority:forConstraints:
+ autoSetIdentifier:forConstraints: // iOS 7.0+, OS X 10.9+ only
- autoIdentify: // iOS 7.0+, OS X 10.9+ only
- autoInstall
- autoRemove


Sample Code (Swift)

PureLayout dramatically simplifies writing Auto Layout code. Let's take a quick look at some examples, using PureLayout from Swift.

Initialize the view using PureLayout initializer:

let view1 = UIView(forAutoLayout: ())

If you need to use a different initializer (e.g. in UIView subclass), you can also use configureForAutoLayout:

view1.configureForAutoLayout() // alternative to UIView.init(forAutoLayout: ())

Here's a constraint between two views created (and automatically activated) using PureLayout:

view1.autoPinEdge(.top, toEdge: .bottom, ofView: view2)

Without PureLayout, here's the equivalent code you'd have to write using Apple's Foundation API directly:

NSLayoutConstraint(item: view1, attribute: .top, relatedBy: .equal, toItem: view2, attribute: .bottom, multiplier: 1.0, constant: 0.0).active = true

Many APIs of PureLayout create multiple constraints for you under the hood, letting you write highly readable layout code:

// 2 constraints created & activated in one line!

// 4 constraints created & activated in one line!
textContentView.autoPinEdgesToSuperviewEdges(with insets: UIEdgeInsets(top: 20.0, left: 5.0, bottom: 10.0, right: 5.0))

PureLayout always returns the constraints it creates so you have full control:

let constraint = skinnyView.autoMatchDimension(.height, toDimension: .width, ofView: tallView)

PureLayout supports safearea with iOS 11.0+:

view2.autoPinEdge(toSuperviewSafeArea: .top)

PureLayout supports all Auto Layout features including inequalities, priorities, layout margins, identifiers, and much more. It's a comprehensive, developer-friendly way to use Auto Layout.

Check out the example apps below for many more demos of PureLayout in use.

Example Apps

Open the project included in the repository (requires Xcode 6 or higher). It contains iOS (Example-iOS scheme) and OS X (Example-Mac scheme) demos of the library being used in various scenarios. The demos in the iOS example app make a great introductory tutorial to PureLayout -- run each demo, review the code used to implement it, then practice by making some changes of your own to the demo code.

Each demo in the iOS example app has a Swift and Objective-C version. To compile & run the Swift demos, you must use Xcode 7.0 or higher (Swift 2.0) and choose the Example-iOS-Xcode7 scheme. When you run the example app, you can easily switch between using the Swift and Objective-C versions of the demos. To see the constraints in action while running the iOS demos, try using different device simulators, rotating the device to different orientations, as well as toggling the taller in-call status bar in the iOS Simulator.

On OS X, while running the app, press any key to cycle through the demos. You can resize the window to see the constraints in action.

Tips and Tricks

Check out some Tips and Tricks to keep in mind when using the API.

PureLayout vs. the rest

There are quite a few different ways to implement Auto Layout. Here is a quick overview of the available options:

  • Apple NSLayoutConstraint SDK API
    • Pros: Raw power
    • Cons: Extremely verbose; tedious to write; difficult to read
  • Apple Visual Format Language
    • Pros: Concise; convenient
    • Cons: Doesn't support some use cases; lacks compile-time checking and safety; must learn syntax; hard to debug
  • Apple Interface Builder
    • Pros: Visual; interactive; provides compile-time layout checking
    • Cons: Difficult for complex layouts; cannot dynamically set constraints at runtime; encourages hardcoded magic numbers; not always WYSIWYG
  • Apple NSLayoutAnchor SDK API
    • Pros: Clean, readable, and type-safe API for creating individual constraints
    • Cons: Only available in iOS 9.0 and OS X 10.11 and higher; requires manually activating each constraint; no API for creating multiple constraints at once
  • PureLayout
    • Pros: Compatible with Objective-C and Swift codebases; consistent with Cocoa API style; cross-platform API and implementation shared across iOS and OS X; fully backwards-compatible to iOS 6 & OS X 10.7; easy to use; type-safe; efficient
    • Cons: Not the most concise expression of layout code
  • High-level Auto Layout Libraries/DSLs (Cartography, SnapKit, KeepLayout)
    • Pros: Very clean, concise, and convenient
    • Cons: Unique API style is foreign to Apple's APIs; mixed compatibility with Objective-C & Swift; greater dependency on third party code

PureLayout takes a balanced approach to Auto Layout that makes it well suited for any project.

Problems, Suggestions, Pull Requests?

Please open a new Issue here if you run into a problem specific to PureLayout, have a feature request, or want to share a comment. Note that general Auto Layout questions should be asked on Stack Overflow.

Pull requests are encouraged and greatly appreciated! Please try to maintain consistency with the existing code style. If you're considering taking on significant changes or additions to the project, please communicate in advance by opening a new Issue. This allows everyone to get onboard with upcoming changes, ensures that changes align with the project's design philosophy, and avoids duplicated work.

Author: PureLayout
Source Code: https://github.com/PureLayout/PureLayout
License: View license

#ios #swift #objective-c 

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PureLayout: The Ultimate API for iOS & OS X Auto Layout

Top 10 API Security Threats Every API Team Should Know

As more and more data is exposed via APIs either as API-first companies or for the explosion of single page apps/JAMStack, API security can no longer be an afterthought. The hard part about APIs is that it provides direct access to large amounts of data while bypassing browser precautions. Instead of worrying about SQL injection and XSS issues, you should be concerned about the bad actor who was able to paginate through all your customer records and their data.

Typical prevention mechanisms like Captchas and browser fingerprinting won’t work since APIs by design need to handle a very large number of API accesses even by a single customer. So where do you start? The first thing is to put yourself in the shoes of a hacker and then instrument your APIs to detect and block common attacks along with unknown unknowns for zero-day exploits. Some of these are on the OWASP Security API list, but not all.

Insecure pagination and resource limits

Most APIs provide access to resources that are lists of entities such as /users or /widgets. A client such as a browser would typically filter and paginate through this list to limit the number items returned to a client like so:

First Call: GET /items?skip=0&take=10 
Second Call: GET /items?skip=10&take=10

However, if that entity has any PII or other information, then a hacker could scrape that endpoint to get a dump of all entities in your database. This could be most dangerous if those entities accidently exposed PII or other sensitive information, but could also be dangerous in providing competitors or others with adoption and usage stats for your business or provide scammers with a way to get large email lists. See how Venmo data was scraped

A naive protection mechanism would be to check the take count and throw an error if greater than 100 or 1000. The problem with this is two-fold:

  1. For data APIs, legitimate customers may need to fetch and sync a large number of records such as via cron jobs. Artificially small pagination limits can force your API to be very chatty decreasing overall throughput. Max limits are to ensure memory and scalability requirements are met (and prevent certain DDoS attacks), not to guarantee security.
  2. This offers zero protection to a hacker that writes a simple script that sleeps a random delay between repeated accesses.
skip = 0
while True:    response = requests.post('https://api.acmeinc.com/widgets?take=10&skip=' + skip),                      headers={'Authorization': 'Bearer' + ' ' + sys.argv[1]})    print("Fetched 10 items")    sleep(randint(100,1000))    skip += 10

How to secure against pagination attacks

To secure against pagination attacks, you should track how many items of a single resource are accessed within a certain time period for each user or API key rather than just at the request level. By tracking API resource access at the user level, you can block a user or API key once they hit a threshold such as “touched 1,000,000 items in a one hour period”. This is dependent on your API use case and can even be dependent on their subscription with you. Like a Captcha, this can slow down the speed that a hacker can exploit your API, like a Captcha if they have to create a new user account manually to create a new API key.

Insecure API key generation

Most APIs are protected by some sort of API key or JWT (JSON Web Token). This provides a natural way to track and protect your API as API security tools can detect abnormal API behavior and block access to an API key automatically. However, hackers will want to outsmart these mechanisms by generating and using a large pool of API keys from a large number of users just like a web hacker would use a large pool of IP addresses to circumvent DDoS protection.

How to secure against API key pools

The easiest way to secure against these types of attacks is by requiring a human to sign up for your service and generate API keys. Bot traffic can be prevented with things like Captcha and 2-Factor Authentication. Unless there is a legitimate business case, new users who sign up for your service should not have the ability to generate API keys programmatically. Instead, only trusted customers should have the ability to generate API keys programmatically. Go one step further and ensure any anomaly detection for abnormal behavior is done at the user and account level, not just for each API key.

Accidental key exposure

APIs are used in a way that increases the probability credentials are leaked:

  1. APIs are expected to be accessed over indefinite time periods, which increases the probability that a hacker obtains a valid API key that’s not expired. You save that API key in a server environment variable and forget about it. This is a drastic contrast to a user logging into an interactive website where the session expires after a short duration.
  2. The consumer of an API has direct access to the credentials such as when debugging via Postman or CURL. It only takes a single developer to accidently copy/pastes the CURL command containing the API key into a public forum like in GitHub Issues or Stack Overflow.
  3. API keys are usually bearer tokens without requiring any other identifying information. APIs cannot leverage things like one-time use tokens or 2-factor authentication.

If a key is exposed due to user error, one may think you as the API provider has any blame. However, security is all about reducing surface area and risk. Treat your customer data as if it’s your own and help them by adding guards that prevent accidental key exposure.

How to prevent accidental key exposure

The easiest way to prevent key exposure is by leveraging two tokens rather than one. A refresh token is stored as an environment variable and can only be used to generate short lived access tokens. Unlike the refresh token, these short lived tokens can access the resources, but are time limited such as in hours or days.

The customer will store the refresh token with other API keys. Then your SDK will generate access tokens on SDK init or when the last access token expires. If a CURL command gets pasted into a GitHub issue, then a hacker would need to use it within hours reducing the attack vector (unless it was the actual refresh token which is low probability)

Exposure to DDoS attacks

APIs open up entirely new business models where customers can access your API platform programmatically. However, this can make DDoS protection tricky. Most DDoS protection is designed to absorb and reject a large number of requests from bad actors during DDoS attacks but still need to let the good ones through. This requires fingerprinting the HTTP requests to check against what looks like bot traffic. This is much harder for API products as all traffic looks like bot traffic and is not coming from a browser where things like cookies are present.

Stopping DDoS attacks

The magical part about APIs is almost every access requires an API Key. If a request doesn’t have an API key, you can automatically reject it which is lightweight on your servers (Ensure authentication is short circuited very early before later middleware like request JSON parsing). So then how do you handle authenticated requests? The easiest is to leverage rate limit counters for each API key such as to handle X requests per minute and reject those above the threshold with a 429 HTTP response. There are a variety of algorithms to do this such as leaky bucket and fixed window counters.

Incorrect server security

APIs are no different than web servers when it comes to good server hygiene. Data can be leaked due to misconfigured SSL certificate or allowing non-HTTPS traffic. For modern applications, there is very little reason to accept non-HTTPS requests, but a customer could mistakenly issue a non HTTP request from their application or CURL exposing the API key. APIs do not have the protection of a browser so things like HSTS or redirect to HTTPS offer no protection.

How to ensure proper SSL

Test your SSL implementation over at Qualys SSL Test or similar tool. You should also block all non-HTTP requests which can be done within your load balancer. You should also remove any HTTP headers scrub any error messages that leak implementation details. If your API is used only by your own apps or can only be accessed server-side, then review Authoritative guide to Cross-Origin Resource Sharing for REST APIs

Incorrect caching headers

APIs provide access to dynamic data that’s scoped to each API key. Any caching implementation should have the ability to scope to an API key to prevent cross-pollution. Even if you don’t cache anything in your infrastructure, you could expose your customers to security holes. If a customer with a proxy server was using multiple API keys such as one for development and one for production, then they could see cross-pollinated data.

#api management #api security #api best practices #api providers #security analytics #api management policies #api access tokens #api access #api security risks #api access keys

Autumn  Blick

Autumn Blick


Public ASX100 APIs: The Essential List

We’ve conducted some initial research into the public APIs of the ASX100 because we regularly have conversations about what others are doing with their APIs and what best practices look like. Being able to point to good local examples and explain what is happening in Australia is a key part of this conversation.


The method used for this initial research was to obtain a list of the ASX100 (as of 18 September 2020). Then work through each company looking at the following:

  1. Whether the company had a public API: this was found by googling “[company name] API” and “[company name] API developer” and “[company name] developer portal”. Sometimes the company’s website was navigated or searched.
  2. Some data points about the API were noted, such as the URL of the portal/documentation and the method they used to publish the API (portal, documentation, web page).
  3. Observations were recorded that piqued the interest of the researchers (you will find these below).
  4. Other notes were made to support future research.
  5. You will find a summary of the data in the infographic below.


With regards to how the APIs are shared:

#api #api-development #api-analytics #apis #api-integration #api-testing #api-security #api-gateway

An API-First Approach For Designing Restful APIs | Hacker Noon

I’ve been working with Restful APIs for some time now and one thing that I love to do is to talk about APIs.

So, today I will show you how to build an API using the API-First approach and Design First with OpenAPI Specification.

First thing first, if you don’t know what’s an API-First approach means, it would be nice you stop reading this and check the blog post that I wrote to the Farfetchs blog where I explain everything that you need to know to start an API using API-First.

Preparing the ground

Before you get your hands dirty, let’s prepare the ground and understand the use case that will be developed.


If you desire to reproduce the examples that will be shown here, you will need some of those items below.

  • NodeJS
  • OpenAPI Specification
  • Text Editor (I’ll use VSCode)
  • Command Line

Use Case

To keep easy to understand, let’s use the Todo List App, it is a very common concept beyond the software development community.

#api #rest-api #openai #api-first-development #api-design #apis #restful-apis #restful-api

Marcelle  Smith

Marcelle Smith


What Are Good Traits That Make Great API Product Managers

As more companies realize the benefits of an API-first mindset and treating their APIs as products, there is a growing need for good API product management practices to make a company’s API strategy a reality. However, API product management is a relatively new field with little established knowledge on what is API product management and what a PM should be doing to ensure their API platform is successful.

Many of the current practices of API product management have carried over from other products and platforms like web and mobile, but API products have their own unique set of challenges due to the way they are marketed and used by customers. While it would be rare for a consumer mobile app to have detailed developer docs and a developer relations team, you’ll find these items common among API product-focused companies. A second unique challenge is that APIs are very developer-centric and many times API PMs are engineers themselves. Yet, this can cause an API or developer program to lose empathy for what their customers actually want if good processes are not in place. Just because you’re an engineer, don’t assume your customers will want the same features and use cases that you want.

This guide lays out what is API product management and some of the things you should be doing to be a good product manager.

#api #analytics #apis #product management #api best practices #api platform #api adoption #product managers #api product #api metrics

Autumn  Blick

Autumn Blick


54% of Developers Cite Lack of Documentation as the Top Obstacle to Consuming APIs

Recently, I worked with my team at Postman to field the 2020 State of the API survey and report. We’re insanely grateful to the folks who participated—more than 13,500 developers and other professionals took the survey, helping make this the largest and most comprehensive survey in the industry. (Seriously folks, thank you!) Curious what we learned? Here are a few insights in areas that you might find interesting:

API Reliability

Whether internal, external, or partner, APIs are perceived as reliable—more than half of respondents stated that APIs do not break, stop working, or materially change specification often enough to matter. Respondents choosing the “not often enough to matter” option here came in at 55.8% for internal APIs, 60.4% for external APIs, and 61.2% for partner APIs.

Obstacles to Producing APIs

When asked about the biggest obstacles to producing APIs, lack of time is by far the leading obstacle, with 52.3% of respondents listing it. Lack of knowledge (36.4%) and people (35.1%) were the next highest.

#api #rest-api #apis #api-first-development #api-report #api-documentation #api-reliability #hackernoon-top-story