W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-ws-addressing@w3.org > November 2004

Re: NEW ISSUE: making wsa:Action optional

From: Francisco Curbera <curbera@us.ibm.com>
Date: Sat, 6 Nov 2004 23:35:24 -0500
To: Mark Little <mark.little@arjuna.com>
Cc: Mark Little <mark.little@arjuna.com>, Mark Nottingham <mark.nottingham@bea.com>, public-ws-addressing@w3.org, public-ws-addressing-request@w3.org
Message-ID: <OFE756C360.7646C7BA-ON85256F45.00188F28-85256F45.00193729@us.ibm.com>

"The argument against is that dispatching isn't part of addressing and so
shouldn't be in this specification;" Really? Last I checked Action is part
of the spec and part of the charter. Everyone can have their own definition
or the scope of this WG, but the charter is pretty clear about this
particular point.


                      Mark Little                                                                                                              
                      <mark.little@arjuna.com>        To:       Mark Little <mark.little@arjuna.com>                                           
                      Sent by:                        cc:       Mark Nottingham <mark.nottingham@bea.com>, public-ws-addressing@w3.org         
                      public-ws-addressing-req        Subject:  NEW ISSUE: making wsa:Action optional                                          
                      11/06/2004 04:13 AM                                                                                                      

There is some confusion as to what precisely wsa;Action is meant to
represent in the current specification. However, most people seem to
have the opinion that it is used to represent the semantics of the
message contained in the SOAP body. In which case, this element is used
for dispatching the message (similar to using an opcode in other
distributed environments).

However, if wsa:Action is used to optimize dispatching so that the same
semantics do not have to be obtained by parsing the entire SOAP body,
this is purely an optimization. As such, its presence or lack thereof
does not affect the architecture/model defined by the specification; it
is entirely feasible to implement the equivalent distributed
application without wsa:Action, albeit in (perhaps) a less performant

The argument for adding wsa:Action is that many vendors want this
optimization and standardizing on it has merit. The argument against is
that dispatching isn't part of addressing and so shouldn't be in this
specification; furthermore, there are vendors and users who simply
don't need this functionality. In fact its presence doesn't even mean
that the receiver has to use it, so in that regard it's optional at the
receiver and yet mandatory at the sender.

What the discussions over the past few days appear to show is that
making wsa:Action mandatory is wrong. In the case where it isn't needed
it encourages vendors/users to fill it with something that isn't valid
"because it's there", which adversely affects interoperability. The
lack of wsa:Action in a header sends a clear message to any receiver;
its presence does not.

Therefore, I propose that we make wsa:Action optional.


Mark Little,
Chief Architect,
Arjuna Technologies Ltd.

Received on Sunday, 7 November 2004 04:37:13 UTC

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