An attachment is a type of element. Just like other elements, it can be created, updated, and deleted from a blip. For more information on doing operations on a blip, please refer to Selectors and Actions.


  1. Reading Attachments
  2. Writing Attachments
  3. Samples

Reading Attachments

You can read wave attachment content and attributes by using the getters of the attributes of an attachment: Attachment Id, Attachment URL, Caption, Data, and MIME Type.

The following table provides detailed descriptions on these attributes:

Attribute Name Description
Attachment Id Unique ID Assigned to an Attachment
Attachment URL URL to Use to Download the Attachment
Caption Caption or File Name for the Attachment
Data Raw Binary Data for the Attachment
MIME Type Attachment MIME Type (If Can be Determined)

The following is a java example of getting a list of urls for all attachments in the blip. The code first iterates over all of the elements in a blip. If an element is an attachment, it gets the attachment URL, and puts it into a list:

  • blip.getElements().values() returns all of the elements in a blip.
  • element.isAttachment() returns true if the element is an attachment.
  • ((Attachment)element).getAttachmentUrl() returns the attachment URL.
private List<String> getAllAttachmentUrls(Blip blip) {
  List<String> urls = new ArrayList<String>();
  Collection<Element> elements = blip.getElements().values();
  for (Element element : elements) {
    if (element.isAttachment()) {
      urls.add(((Attachment) element).getAttachmentUrl());
  return urls;

The following is a Python example of getting an attachment URL. If the blip has an attachment, the code appends the first attachment URL to the blip.

def OnBlipSubmitted(event, wavelet):
  blip = event.blip
  attachment = blip.first(element.Attachment)
  if attachment:
    blip.append("Attachment URL is:" + attachment.value().get("attachmentUrl"))

Writing Attachments

Attachments can be created, updated, and deleted. You create an attachment by providing an attachment caption and data. You update an attachment by replacing the old attachment with a new attachment. You delete an attachment by removing the attachment element.

The following is a java example of creating an attachment in wave. The code iterates over the blips in a wavelet, gets the text content, creates an attachment with the concatenated content as data, and inserts the attachment in a new blip:

  • wavelet.getBlips().values() returns all of the blips in a wavelet.
  • blip.all().values() returns the blip contents
  • new Attachment("export.txt", exportedWave.toString().getBytes()) returns a new attachment.
private void exportText(Wavelet wavelet) {
  StringBuilder exportedWave = new StringBuilder();
  for (Blip blip : wavelet.getBlips().values()) {
  Attachment attachment = new Attachment("export.txt",

The following is a python example of creating an attachment in wave. The code fetches an URL content, and creates an attachment with the content.

def OnBlipSubmitted(event, wavelet):
  blip = event.blip
  attachment = element.Attachment(caption="new file", data=fileData)

The following is a java example of importing an attachment into wave by replacing it with its content. This example assumes that the attachment in the blip is text attachment. The code finds the first attachment in the blip, and replaces it with the attachment content:

  • blip.first(ElementType.ATTACHMENT) returns a blip content reference of the first attachment.
  • (Attachment) attachmentRef.value() returns an attachment element.
  • attachmentRef.replace(new String(attachment.getData())) replaces an attachment with its content.
private void replaceAttachment(Blip blip) {
  BlipContentRefs attachmentRef = blip.first(ElementType.ATTACHMENT);
  if(attachmentRef != null) {
    Attachment attachment = (Attachment) attachmentRef.value();
    attachmentRef.replace(new String(attachment.getData()));

With the ability of reading and writing attachment in wave, you can do a lot of things. Below are a few more ideas in addition to import and export:

  • Origami Photo Album: you can read a list of images, compose the images with a few styles, and attach the images back to wave.
  • Chart Creation: you can read a file, transform the content of the file to a chart, and insert the chart into wave.
  • File concatination: you can read all the files from a wavelet, concatinate the contents, create a new file, and insert into wave.


The following examples demonstrate using attachments: