Salesforce goes Real-time
With the recent Spring 12 release of Salesforce very few would have noticed a little unsung feature that will change the way many applications interact with with Salesforce. TheStreaming API went GA and allows to listen to changes to objects in the Salesforce platform rather than polling. Salesforce joins the ranks of other leading APIs such as Twitter,Facebook and Instagram that all offer real-time APIs to enable users to consume data in real-time, as events occur.
Polling isn’t Evil, but…
You might be thinking polling isn’t that bad, but there are some real benefits to real-time APIs. It all comes down to time and efficiency. Real-time APIs change the traditional HTTP RPC exchange between server and client into an event driven model. In other words, rather than your app calling in repeatedly, you establish an open channel through an API call and then the server can send events to you as they happen. This means that your app is not wasting resources polling the server repeatedly and getting empty responses back but it also mean you receive new events as they happen.