· Naughties
· · 2005
· · · May
· · · · 03 (2 entries)

Replacing WSDL, Twice · Let’s make three as­sump­tion­s: First, that Web Ser­vices are im­por­tan­t. Se­cond, that to make Web Ser­vices use­ful, you need some sort of dec­la­ra­tion mech­a­nis­m. Third, that WSDL and WSDL 2, de­spite be­ing the work of re­al­ly smart peo­ple, are so com­plex and ab­stract that they have un­ac­cept­ably poor ease-of-use. What then? Nat­u­ral­ly, the mind turns to a small­er, sim­pler suc­ces­sor, sac­ri­fic­ing gen­er­al­i­ty and es­chew­ing ab­strac­tion; in ex­act­ly the same way that XML was a suc­ces­sor for SGML. Well any­how, that’s the di­rec­tion my mind turned. So did Norm Walsh’s; his pro­pos­al for NSDL al­so in­cludes a help­ful ex­pla­na­tion of why Web-Service de­scrip­tion is im­por­tan­t. My sketch is called SMEX-D. In­ter­est­ing­ly, NSDL and SMEX-D, al­though both wave the ban­ner of The Sim­plest Thing That Could Pos­si­bly Work, are wild­ly dif­fer­en­t; NSDL is the sim­plest way you could pos­si­bly de­clare an RPC-style func­tion call with po­si­tion­al pa­ram­e­ter­s. SMEX-D is the sim­plest pos­si­ble way you could de­clare an ex­change of XML mes­sages. Which is more im­por­tan­t? Are both nec­es­sary? I sus­pect that these days, the Sim­plest Thing That Could Pos­si­bly Work would in­clude a dec­la­ra­tion that a par­tic­u­lar message-exchange/function-call should be re­li­able, us­ing HTTPLR or equiv­a­len­t. Are there any oth­er pro­pos­als or skunkworks float­ing around out there? Let me know and I’ll ag­gre­gate point­er­s. [Up­dat­ed with more pro­pos­al­s, startling com­men­tary from Meg­gin­son and Obasan­jo, and an ap­peal to Sowa’s law]. ...
SMEX-D · SMEX stands for Sim­ple Mes­sage Ex­change, and SMEX-D for SMEX De­scrip­tor, an XML lan­guage de­signed to pro­vide sim­ple de­scrip­tions of a wide range of Web-Service mes­sage ex­changes, both REST-based and SOAP-based ...
author · Dad · software · colophon · rights
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