I’d been going to do a REST news round-up, but Dave Johnson beat me to it. He calls it “Atom and REST” and yes, I’ve noticed a pattern where you get a handful or more of RESTafarians in a room, virtual or real, and Atom keeps bubbling up. Not just the protocol, but the data format too. Oops, Dave missed one: Pete Lacey.
I usually agree with Aristotle, but I think the answer is obvious. Enough people think that you need to describe services formally that not having one is an unnecessary barrier to adoption. Personally, I’m one of those people. I think writing formal schemas is a good idea for language designers even if they never get used at run-time; they’re good for documentation, tooling, and (not least important) forcing you to think formally about your problem space.
I like WADL but who knows, maybe it’s not the last word. Either way; yes, there is a hole in the ecosystem here.