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Re: [www-ws] <none>

From: Anne Thomas Manes <anne@manes.net>
Date: Sun, 08 Feb 2004 12:51:00 -0500
Message-Id: <>
To: "Lesley O'Connor" <leoconno@tcd.ie>, www-ws@w3.org


 From the WS-Architecture Glossary:

A Web service is a software system designed to support interoperable 
machine-to-machine interaction over a network. It has an interface 
described in a machine-processable format (specifically WSDL). Other 
systems interact with the Web service in a manner prescribed by its 
description using SOAP-messages, typically conveyed using HTTP with an XML 
serialization in conjunction with other Web-related standards.

To break down this definition a bit more:

- A Web service is a "software system": it's a piece of software
-  "interoperable": it supports heterogeneous access
- "machine-to-machine interaction": it's designed to be consumed by other 
pieces of software
- "over a network": it supports distributed computing
- It has an "interface": it has an application programming interface (API)
- "described in a machine-processable format": the interface description 
(WSDL) can be compiled in order to generate code or to support other 
functions, such as validation or transformation.
- "Other systems interact with the Web service in a manner prescribed by 
its description": the WSDL describes the mechanisms that client 
applications must use to connect to and communicate with the service.
- "using SOAP-messages": applications use the SOAP protocol to communicate 
with a Web service.
- "typically conveyed using HTTP": usually, but not always over HTTP
- "with an XML serialization": the SOAP message is formatted using XML
- "in conjunction with other Web-related standards": Web services work well 
along-side other Web applications


At 06:35 AM 2/8/2004, Lesley O'Connor wrote:
>Just wondering if you provide me with a lay-person's definition of what web
>services are, how they came about and where you hope to bring them in the
>course of your work?

Anne Thomas Manes
VP & Research Director
Burton Group 
Received on Sunday, 8 February 2004 12:59:46 UTC

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