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   RE: [xml-dev] SOAP-RPC and REST and security

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> From: Paul Prescod [mailto:paul@prescod.net]

> BTW, in the last few weeks of argument here I'm yet to hear an inspired
> argument in favor of SOAP. Anyone here think it's great? Really
> inspired? Wonderful?

I think most folks in the SOAP community just want something that works. I
don't think too many have any strong philosophical attachment to the current
way of doing things. They are just trying to get a job done.

> That's kind of interesting to me. If SOAP had been invented by a couple
> of smart programmers and published as a spec, what kind of user pull
> would there be for it?

Well, there seems to be a healthy and thriving XML-RPC community out there.
I remember a project I worked on a couple of years ago -- integrating a
legacy mainframe app with the web -- where we defined an XML messaging
protocol to wrap the mainframe interface, and it ended up looking quite a
bit like SOAP. When I started here at Allegis, they had already defined an
XML messaging approach that looked quite a bit like SOAP (which was not out,
yet, when they came up with it).

There wouldn't be quite the media hoopla out there were it not for IBM and
Microsoft pushing it so hard, but it -- or something very much like it --
definitely would be out there and in use, because it's useful and the
approach it adopted is a very natural progression for those doing web
applications. At least it was natural for me, even before I had heard of
"SOAP". Maybe if I had been aware of REST I would have adopted a different
approach. But as someone who has done procedural and OO programming for many
years, who had experience with distributed systems, who had made the
progression to doing web apps using ASP, JSP, servlets, etc., I naturally
drifted to a SOAP-like model, as did other developers I've worked with. So I
have no doubt that we would have something very much like SOAP even if
Microsoft and IBM had never jumped on the bandwagon.


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