OData is a protocol that is equivalent to the web of the SQL standard for the database. In the same way that SQL is a language that allow suerying the filtred data, sorted, projected from a database, OData is a syntax that allow the same operations but on rendered data sources via the HTTP(S) protocol.
In the case of a database, a customer is used which provides the syntax to the server, which executes the query and returns the data. In the case of an OData service, the operation is exactly the same: the customer (any web client as an example browser) send a request after the Odata syntax , and receive the result.
OData for whom? and why?
OData for citizens
Lastly, we come to the most important, the citizen… OData particalarly indicated to solve the interoperability problem that will increasingly rest on the Open Data portal. Such provision of public data update sites begins to multply, which is a vaery good thing, but they are yet a lot based on data which not much in standardized formats, and which do not make simple operation with data.
OData can meet this need by standardizing the interrogation protocol and data sharing, including the re-aggregation between different levels of exposure. The entities that expose the public data are often the main users, and benefit directly from standardization. Their communication with higher or lower layers, which do not necessarily use the same vocabulary and knowledge will derive even more benefit.
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