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Re: [RTF] Behavior definition of Services - public discussion

From: Francis McCabe <fgm@fla.fujitsu.com>
Date: Tue, 9 Jul 2002 09:10:45 -0700
To: "Damodaran, Suresh" <Suresh_Damodaran@stercomm.com>
Message-Id: <D86BD381-935C-11D6-9A73-000393A3327C@fla.fujitsu.com>

On Tuesday, July 9, 2002, at 07:08  AM, Damodaran, Suresh wrote:

> From the discussions so far in this thread, is there a consensus
> that "though defining semantic equivalence of functional behavior is an
> interesting idea,
> it is very ill defined to be considered a requirement of Web Service
> Architecture"
> Thanks,
> -Suresh
> Sterling Commerce

This is a straw man; a very poor implement with which to beat a dead 
horse. On the other hand, simply wishing away a problem doesn't magick 
(sic) it away.

We ignore semantics at our peril. Let me repeat, the game is `doing 
business on the Internet' and `its my system talking to yours' when `we 
met 3 milliseconds ago'. If you can achieve this without explicit 
semantics I'd like to see how to do it.

CORBA `failed' because it required a prior agreement between 
programmers -- i.e., a time scale of months if not years to get stuff 
through OMG. It is also incredibly fragile because of its very early 
binding character. I am not advocating CORBA over SOAP.

On the other hand, `web services as RPC using SOAP' doesn't work either. 
The Internet is a public forum, and that changes everything.

In order to transform web services from `something that shows promise' 
to `something that delivers value to customers' you need to address real 
business needs, not just those that it is easy or convenient to handle. 
It is my assertion that that includes being able to handle the standard 
(even ancient) ways that business has been conducted. It also includes 
taking maximum advantage of the potential offered by the public forum.

If we fail in our vision then we will fail to make a difference and web 
services will be yet another technological roadkill. On the other hand, 
if we adopt a strong goal -- of enabling people to conduct business in a 
standards enabled fashion -- then we will have something to be proud of.

I believe that this calls for:

1. A vision of web services as a deployment platform for doing automated 
business in a public forum
2. A capability for discovering potential business partners
3. A facility of doing business that reflects the natural flow of 
information during a business relationship
4. An environment in which trust and security is fundamental

Frank McCabe

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Newcomer, Eric [mailto:Eric.Newcomer@iona.com]
> Sent: Sunday, July 07, 2002 10:46 AM
> To: Champion, Mike; www-ws-arch@w3.org
> Subject: RE: [RTF] Behavior definition of Services - public discussion
> I think it's best if we concentrate on developing the reference 
> architecture
> as "job No. 1" rather than try to reach conclusion on the extent to 
> which
> semantic inferences are integral.
> The industry really needs guidance on what a web service is and isn't, 
> and
> what is and is not included in a Web services architecture that does 
> more
> than the basics.
> Eric
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Champion, Mike [mailto:Mike.Champion@softwareag-usa.com]
> Sent: Wednesday, July 03, 2002 4:07 PM
> To: 'www-ws-arch@w3.org'
> Subject: RE: [RTF] Behavior definition of Services - public discussion
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Francis McCabe [mailto:fgm@fla.fujitsu.com]
>> Sent: Wednesday, July 03, 2002 12:18 PM
>> To: Champion, Mike
>> Cc: 'www-ws-arch@w3.org'
>> Subject: Re: [RTF] Behavior definition of Services - public discussion
>> The bottom line: avoid phrasing the question in terms of equivalence,
>> instead phrase the question in terms of `have I heard of this name
>> before'?
> My bottom line is
>>>> concepts like semantic equivalence that
>>>> could create expectations well beyond what Web Services can actually
>>>> deliver today.
> I'm eagerly looking forward to seeing and using technologies using "a 
> graph
> of concepts that a web service provider  publishes to describe his or 
> her
> service. A client applies a matching test to that graph -- which might
> include getting references from other graphs -- to see if the graph is
> congruent with his desired service."  Maybe I'm not looking in the right
> places, but I just don't see that in the real world of web services 
> today.
> Thus, it is IMHO inappropriate to *require* the WSA to accomodate ideas
> which *may* prove powerful, until their practical value has been
> demonstrated.  The W3C -- to bang one of my favorite drums, sorry -- is 
> most
> successful when working to standardize practice, and least successful 
> when
> trying to do computer science by committee.  I would be very happy to
> incorporate field-tested semantic inference technology into the WSA, 
> but I
> can't agree to require it based on the current state of the art.
Received on Tuesday, 9 July 2002 12:58:05 UTC

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