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   Re: [xml-dev] Is XML-REST more scalable than SOAP?

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[Roger L. Costello]

> Now consider the case where web sites serve up XML not HTML (I shall
> refer to this as XML-REST).  Suppose that the XML is programmatically
> processed.  The HTTP methods (GET, POST, PUT, etc) provide a nice set of
> **access methods** for getting and putting the XML data.  Thus,
> **accessibility** is scalable as it is on the order of linear.  However,
> **processing** the XML data still needs customized code (just like
> machine processing of HTML requires custom code).  I therefore conclude
> that XML-REST is no more scalable than SOAP.
> In general REST is not scalable when processed by machines.  The only
> reason that it is scalable with HTML is because our brains are
> infinitely adaptable, i.e., as we see a new HTML rendition our brain can
> quickly parse it and understand it.  Note: I do agree that SOAP is not
> scalable.  Thus, as I see it, both SOAP and REST miss the mark.
> Am I missing something?
No, I don't think you are except to the extent that there are agreed on
intermediate (XML-based, no doubt) languages to reduce the exponent below
N^2.  Part of the interest of some kind of Semantic Web, at least as I see
it, is the potential to provide some commonality in processing to lower the
exponent and also the time needed for custom programming.

It seems like you have reached the same conclusion, based on your next

> --------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Creating a Scalable, Machine-Processable Web Services Architecture
> How can we make XML-REST scalable?  One solution would be to require
> every web site to serve up the same type of XML documents, i.e., have a
> universal Schema that all XML documents conform to.  Obviously this is
> not a very attractive solution.  The other solution is to have web sites
> serve up documents whose meaning can be dynamically "discovered".  I
> believe that RDF is the only XML technology that enables dynamic
> understanding of content.  Thus, the cornerstone for a scalable,
> machine-processable web services architecture is:
> 1. The HTTP access methods - GET, POST, PUT, etc
> 2. A dynamically understandable vocabulary, such as RDF.

Well, remember, the vocabulary isn't RDF per se, it's DAML or SHOE or some
such.  The RDF acts as a substrate (as XML acts as a substrate for
structured information) to allow the expression and interpretation of the


Tom P


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