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

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Rich Salz wrote:
> I think it is important to distinguish between "the Web works because it
> is a RESTful architecture" and "the web works; its architecture is
> thus..."  The latter formulation admits the possibility that, for
> example, an awful lot of effort made something mediocre work.

There is no doubt that in many senses the Web is mediocre. But
nevertheless, there are certain properties that were it lacking, it
COULD NOT have become "the Web" no matter how much money or effort was
thrown at it. Lotus Notes could not have become "the Web" even if
Microsoft and IBM had agreed on it and thrown a billion dollars at it.
Gopher could not have become "the Web" under the same circumstances.
SMTP had twenty years to evolve into "the Web" protocol and didn't.

It's my assertion that SOAP/WSDL cannot be the basis for mutually
interoperable "Web-Scale Services" until they learn the lessons of the
Web. Individual (but non-interoperable) "Web-Scale Services" could
probably be at least be as successful as SMTP or FTP (if not HTTP) if
they would learn the lessons of SMTP or FTP but only a minority of the
web services community seem to be in that mental place yet.

Rather than elaborate here, I'll refer anyone who contacts me to a new
(not-yet-public) paper on this issue.
Come discuss XML and REST web services at:
  Open Source Conference: July 22-26, 2002, conferences.oreillynet.com
  Extreme Markup: Aug 4-9, 2002,  www.extrememarkup.com/extreme/


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