Thursday, 12 March 2015


Looking at it from the cold end, today resembles a total waste of my time.

I've been asked by a friend to help with a little eBay project they're working on. I said I'd take a look at the eBay API and see if I could connect to it. After an initial moment of panic and my walking/running away (the eBay system is so archaic that barely any link, tutorial, or page still works) I came back and found some useful sample code. After about an hour of work I'd managed to figure out how to connect to the sandbox and I'd started to exchange data. That should have been the hardest part. From there, I started to build a new interface. However, some time after 4pm, the eBay sandbox went down. Not that there's a status page to say as much. There's not even a proper developer's forum where such things can be discussed. I'm now at the point where I might just abandon this as a bad idea.

For a company as big as eBay, the situation for developers is frankly appalling. It's like they've made their money and don't really care if others can write code that can communicate with their system. It's been an absolute waste of a day; a day that I could have otherwise spent on other work. I have three new cartoons which will become another batch to submit to a magazine. I'm trying to create one batch of cartoons a week but two if possible. This will be my second if I get draw another cartoon tonight, which I will if eBay don't fix their sandbox.

Meanwhile, in server hell: my site keeps disappearing when I'm not looking. I think it's a memory issue, even through I've moved up to a 1Gb server. I won't be moving higher so I have to figure out the problem or resign myself to rebooting the server every few days.


  1. I've started working on a ebay client 2 days ago. Today sandbox down. The API documentation is awfull. Ebay is awfull. Time lost. Money lost. Hope server will come back soon or i will screw them for ever.

  2. So glad you confirmed that about the sandbox. I'd begun to worry that they had caught sight of my ugly code and blacklisted me.

    Agreed about the documenation. Only when found the sample files in the the sdk did it become a little clearer.

  3. Very difficult to continue. Very difficult to find the information, even in developpers forum. People who answer are not so good... I just succeedded putting three products with the API tool, but I am always "slowed down" by the next new issue I encounter. And now, the sandbox is unreachable...
    The only reason why we continue is that among all the marketplaces we use, this one is the cheapest (about fees). The best is Amazon, but also the most expensensive !

  4. I agree! The forums are just horrible. Barely any feedback. I notice people saying the sandbox is down but still no official response.

    For other questions, I'd suggest using Stack Overflow though you have to have a thick skin asking questions over there. I've not reached the stage of uploading data and, with the sandbox down, I don't think I'll be able to proceed. I might risk using the proper tokens to download real data from the actual site. This is the first API I've used so I have no experience of others. However, if this anywhere near the standard, I can't see myself writing much more code that interacts with these big websites.