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Re: Choreography and REST

From: Geoff Arnold <Geoff.Arnold@Sun.COM>
Date: Sat, 10 Aug 2002 23:10:38 -0400
To: Paul Prescod <paul@prescod.net>
Cc: www-ws-arch@w3.org
Message-id: <E93811C5-ACD7-11D6-BECC-000393991304@sun.com>

On Saturday, August 10, 2002, at 10:48  PM, Paul Prescod wrote:
> If I could get a clear picture of the requirements scope for "web
> services" then I could declare whether I think that REST fits or not.
> But instead of a clear problem domain, the web services world tends to
> be defined by its technologies, SOAP and WSDL. Therefore I 
> formulated my
> expression in terms of those standards. I can look at what problems
> those standards are appropriate for and I see that REST is appropriate
> to a superset of them.

How extraordinary.

The most common complaint that I hear these days is not "the problem
with web services is that it's all about SOAP and WSDL". Instead it is
"the problem with web services is that the term has come to mean
every kind of program-to-program interaction over the web".

Never mind. I sympathize with the impulse to define web services in 
terms of
technology. After all, a few weeks ago I proposed a definition which
has led to a fair amount of positive feedback:

      Definition: A Web service is a software application identified by a
      URI, whose interfaces and bindings are defined in terms of XML 
      messages transported by internet protocols. This definition, 
which is
      described using XML artifacts, can be discovered by other software
      applications, which may then interact with the web service in
      a manner prescribed by its definition.

The only technologies prescribed here are XML, URIs, and internet 
and in fact nothing precludes the use of other encodings, naming 
and protocols as part of the service interaction.

Nonetheless, I regard the technology-driven definition as a bug, 
rather than
a feature, and I think we should seek to improve the definition of the
problem domain. However, I strongly believe that this definition should
be driven by application requirements rather than from 
compatibility with
particular technologies and architectural styles......

Geoff Arnold
Sun Microsystems Laboratories
Received on Saturday, 10 August 2002 23:10:39 UTC

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