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   RE: [xml-dev] SOAP and the Web

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On Thu, 2002-04-25 at 21:29, Mike Deem wrote:
> > From: Simon St.Laurent [mailto:simonstl@simonstl.com]
> > 
> > On Thu, 2002-04-25 at 20:33, Mike Deem wrote:
> > > My technical argument is this: all that matters when using SOAP is
> > > and all the power of XML can be leveraged when building applications
> > > that use SOAP.
> > 
> > You don't need SOAP to leverage XML.  If all that matters when using
> > SOAP is XML, I'll take my XML straight up, thanks.
> But an URI with an HTTP GET isn't XML. 

I think you have a very strange notion of what XML is.

> If you are doing HTTP POST (or SMTP, FTP, or any other protocol that
> moves data from one socket to another) with XML content, you are almost
> there.
> Now, suppose you want to include a digital signature with the message.
> This signature really should not be part of core message content itself
> (you should not have to change the schema for this content to include
> the signature). You need some mechanism to separate this extra
> information from the core message content. 

There are also these fancy features called HTTP headers, or, if I really
wanted to get creative, new protocol frameworks like BEEP that offer a
much more sophisticated set of tools for integrating additional
> SOAP does this with an envelope that contains the core content (the
> body), and the extra information (the headers) in a well defined
> structure. Having this well defined structure, and the well defined
> processing model behind it, is also a technical advantage of SOAP.
> Yes, SOAP does mix the message (body) and the envelope/headers. The
> inconvenience this causes in some cases is, IMO, made up for by the fact
> that the *entire* message is still just XML.

I'm sorry, Mike.  I asked for a technical defense of SOAP.  This is just
a feature-list with no comparison to other technical alternatives.  I
send messages whose entire content is "still just XML" all the time,
quite happily, with no SOAP suds.

I can live with the occasional HTTP header, if necessary. Heck - some
people even represent headers as XML behind the scenes, for their own
convenience.  It's not that hard to do, or that exciting a project.

I have a really hard time taking the envelopes-mashed-with-messages
story seriously.  Maybe it makes them handy payloads for shifting
between transports, but those wrappers inflict their own costs.

Simon St.Laurent
Ring around the content, a pocket full of brackets
Errors, errors, all fall down!


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