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   Re: [xml-dev] ANN: Building Web Services the REST Way

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On Wed, Jul 03, 2002 at 03:25:18PM -0700, Paul Prescod wrote:
> REST is about integrating systems using the Web and not tunnelling them
> through the Web. Rich is absolutely right that this is outside of the
> scope of REST and I think is one of the core philosophical distinction
> between SOAP/WSDL/et. al. and REST.
> HTTP can of course be used to tunnel (POST: don't ask, don't tell). But
> REST is an integration architecture: tunnelling of proprietary protocols
> is precisely what it is designed to *replace*.

Well, there are different kinds of tunneling.  The kind that Rich is
talking about, I believe, is supported by REST.  The component is
called a "tunnel", and defined in RFC 2616;

   An intermediary program which is acting as a blind relay between
   two connections. Once active, a tunnel is not considered a party
   to the HTTP communication, though the tunnel may have been
   initiated by an HTTP request. The tunnel ceases to exist when both
   ends of the relayed connections are closed.

The common use of HTTP and SSL doesn't use it, but RFC 2817 describes
how to.

The other meaning of tunnel, of course, is to use HTTP's ability to
move bytes to embed another protocol.

Mark Baker, CTO, Idokorro Mobile (formerly Planetfred)
Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA.               distobj@acm.org
http://www.markbaker.ca        http://www.idokorro.com


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