Michael Yoshitaka Erlewine has just released a new plugin for WordPress he calls HookPress, which extends WordPress for the first time with Web Hooks. Hookpress now allows user-defined HTTP callbacks for push, pipes, and plugins.
HookPress now allows the built-in WordPress action and filter hooks to trigger a script hosted on a remote server rather than on the local server. In addition, the remote script does not have to be written only in PHP, it can be written in Python, or just about any language.
The downside is that HookPress currently makes requests synchronously, so it can measurably degrade performance. To keep performance at its peak it is recommended to use a caching plugin like WP SuperCache.
The idea with HookPress is to use scripts that you can 100% trust, especially since using a script that works with a low level filter like the WP SQL queries could allow the remote script host to launch an XSS attack. Security can be maintained by using a trusted script source.
There are likely to be a lot of new services, and applications popup using HookPress to grab and use webhooks. We’ll be keeping a close eye on the developments.
Michael will be giving a talk on WordPress plugin development, covering HookPress basics as well, at the upcoming Boston WordPress meetup on September 28, 2009.
Web Hooks blog
The Jeff Lindsay slideshow on Web Hooks is below.
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