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I made a curl function so that I can make an api call. Now the function I created is in helper and I call it with Mage::helper('xyz')->curlGet($url). This works but I am not sure whether this is the proper way. I have seen functions created in models. Is there some kind of function convention in magento? Sorry for sounding silly, I am a beginner.

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If you are trying to curl an external website then it belongs in a helper (what you did is correct).

On the other hand, if you are trying to access some data within Magento then a Model is the way to go.

Sometimes you may have an interesting situation where curl is pulling data from another site and that data is model-like. In this case I would suggest creating a model that calls your helper, this way the curl call is abstracted.

See example below:

class Namespace_Module_Model_Charity extends Mage_Core_Model_Abstract {
      public function getCurlData($url){
             if($url){  // make sure url is passed
                  $data = Mage::helper('xyz')->curlGet($url);
                  return $data;
              }
              return false; // if the url wasn't passed we want to know about it
       }
 }
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create an model File in your Exention's model directory

class Namespace_Module_Model_Charity
    extends Mage_Core_Model_Abstract {

public function ModelExample()
{
     echo "Foo Bar";
     return ;
}

}

Now you can call this model function by Mage::getModel('namespace/module')->ModelExample();

Follow these tutorial series by Alan Storm

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