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Building a Data Serving API in Azure

Justice Zishanhi has some recommendations for serving data in Azure:

Data is an important asset to all organizations big and small. As these organizations mature, building an end-to-end data platform to enable BI and AI at scale has become part of that journey. Some organizations, have the requirement to expose modelled data in a data warehouse or data lake (Azure Data Lake Storage Gen2) to downstream consumer applications (mobile or web apps) where access patterns can be unpredictable in respect to frequency of access and/or type of data that is requested.

Data warehouse engines and data lakes are not designed for singleton transactional (request / response) interactions.  To serve these requests at scale and to meet the different SLAs and access pattern unpredictability, data needs to be offloaded to a suitable database engine (i.e., a caching layer) that is built to serve such queries.  

The “Design Patterns” section of this article highlights a generalized pattern for implementing a data serving API which meets this requirement – consisting of a Data Platform component and an API component. For implementing the API, two patterns are commonly adopted – a synchronous pattern or an asynchronous pattern. Both are explored in the “API Implementation Patterns” section of this article.

The example focuses on Cosmos DB and provides quite a bit of helpful guidance.