Getting started with the public ORCID API using swagger – quickstart guide

ORCID recently implemented a swagger definition file for it’s v2.0 API, which means it’s now even easier to access the public ORCID API from your website.  Just use swagger.js.  It’s Super.  And Easy.

Let’s give it a go.

First, clone swagger onto your machine.  Either use the git desktop client, click the button on the repository or fetch it like this if you’re on Linux or OSX:

Next, create a simple webpage called orcid.html in the swagger-js directory.  This is just so we can play around, if you move to production you’ll want to organise your code differently.  Something like this will work fine:

Load the webpage in your browser, then pat yourself on the back.  You’ve just used the ORCID API and written the JSON response to the web page!


That’s not very user friendly though, so let’s not stop there.  Let’s use the data for something useful and make it fancy.  This time we’re going to extract a list of titles for all of the works in the ORCID record.  Create another .html file and paste this into it:

Fantastic.  It should look something like this:


That’s fine, as far as it goes, but we’re not using the real power of identifiers here.  Let’s put a bit more effort in and create some links.  The code below does two things; first it restructures the JSON into something more useful, second it checks to see if we’ve got some kind of link we can apply (from a DOI, Handle or URI).  I’ve only pasted in the main function for brevity.

Which gives you some lovely extra info:


Hopefully that’s got you up and running with a small insight into what it possible.  Next time I’ll run through using the member API (including updating records) in the same way.

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