Parameters in a URL (e.g. key=listOfUsers/user1) are GET parameters and you shouldn't be using them for POST requests. A quick explanation of the difference between GET and POST can be found here.
In your case, to make use of REST principles, you should probably have:
Then, on each URL, you can define the behaviour of different HTTP methods (GET, POST, PUT, DELETE). For example, on /users/<user_id>, you want the following:
GET /users/<user_id> - return the information for <user_id>
POST /users/<user_id> - modify/update the information for <user_id> by providing the data
PUT - I will omit this for now as it is similar enough to `POST` at this level of depth
DELETE /users/<user_id> - delete user with ID <user_id>
So, in your example, you want do a POST to /users/user_1 with the POST data being "John". Then the XPath expression or whatever other way you want to access your data should be hidden from the user and not tightly couple to the URL. This way, if you decide to change the way you store and access data, instead of all your URL's changing, you will simply have to change the code on the server-side.
Now, the answer to your question:
Below is a basic semi-pseudocode of how you can achieve what I mentioned above:
@app.route('/users/<user_id>', methods = ['GET', 'POST', 'DELETE'])
if request.method == 'GET':
"""return the information for <user_id>"""
if request.method == 'POST':
"""modify/update the information for <user_id>"""
# you can use <user_id>, which is a str but could
# changed to be int or whatever you want, along
# with your lxml knowledge to make the required
data = request.form # a multidict containing POST data
if request.method == 'DELETE':
"""delete user with ID <user_id>"""
# POST Error 405 Method Not Allowed
There are a lot of other things to consider like the POST request content-type but I think what I've said so far should be a reasonable starting point. I know I haven't directly answered the exact question you were asking but I hope this helps you. I will make some edits/additions later as well.
Thanks and I hope this is helpful. Please do let me know if I have gotten something wrong.
do you have to do something special for the POST to get routed back correctly? I have /competitions/<int: id> set up but when the POST occurs, it posts to /competitions instead so my post handling logic is never reached.