W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-ws-arch@w3.org > May 2003

RE: Uniformity

From: Champion, Mike <Mike.Champion@SoftwareAG-USA.com>
Date: Fri, 9 May 2003 14:00:27 -0400
Message-ID: <9A4FC925410C024792B85198DF1E97E405A9654F@usmsg03.sagus.com>
To: Mark Baker <distobj@acm.org>, www-ws-arch@w3.org



> -----Original Message-----
> From: Mark Baker [mailto:distobj@acm.org]
> Sent: Friday, May 09, 2003 1:21 PM
> To: www-ws-arch@w3.org
> Subject: Uniformity
> 
> 
> > what makes HTML
> > forms more "uniform" in their semantics than SOAP messages? 
>  And if the
> > scripts/cookies/app servers/etc. are in B but not C, then 
> is B really much
> > too large relative to C?
> 
> "Uniform" means that every method makes sense on every resource.
> The interface for java.lang.Object is uniform, for example, but the
> interface for java.lang.String isn't.
> 
> A typical use of SOAP (with the method in the body) is manipulating
> objects via their specific interface, and so is not uniform.

Whoa!  This is where we part company, unless I'm missing something profound.

Here's a gedankenexperiment:  A company has some asset management module in
their ERP system, and wants to make it web-accessible so that remote
employees can check and update the information about what equipment they use
at home.  (This happens to be the last significantly complex Web app that I
used, that's where this example comes from).  They build a HTML form with
all the necessary widgets to display computers, printers, serial numbers,
etc.  The Boss, being a lurker on www-ws-arch, assigns two programmers to
write an interface between the HTML form and the ERP system:  Fred just
POSTS the form data to a CGI script which untangles the data from HTTP
parameters and calls the ERP's APIs to do what needs to be done.  George
writes some Javascript in the Web page that collects the information from
the form fields, builds a SOAP RPC message, and POSTs it to the ERP system's
SOAP interface, which basically untangles the data from the SOAP body and
calls the ERP's APIs to do what needs to be done.

Are you trying to tell me that what Fred does is using a uniform interface
and what George does is not? It's the same HTML form, the same ERP system,
the same result as far as the user is concerned. One sends data around using
HTTP parameters, one using an XML payload; one writes a CGI script to
process the data, one leverages the ERP system's SOAP interface, but a
pseudocode description of the CGI script and the SOAP interface would be
almost identical. I just don't comprehend any architecturally significant
difference here.
Received on Friday, 9 May 2003 14:00:28 GMT

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