Thursday, 25 May 2006
Web Services are Dead, Long Live Web Services
When I joined Yahoo, one of the biggest adjustments I had to make was to their use of “Web Services”. There, that phrase means any kind of machine-to-machine communication using HTTP; SOAP isn’t assumed (or preferred).
This is diametrically opposed to the vendor and standards worlds, where “Web Services” means the stack of SOAP, WSDL and friends. Much confusion ensued on my part, because outside of the vendor and standards hothouse, real-world developers are still using the phrase to mean what it says; services on the Web.
Mark Baker says he sees the same thing happening in the greater world.
This is good, because the alternatives aren’t as intuitive. “REST” is so high-level, and often leads you into somebody else’s religious battle. I like Web-style, but it still seems a bit… architectural — which is fine for discussing the architecture, but not as good for talking to developers.
I’m trying HTTP Web Services to see if it will stick. The HTTP is just to disambiguate, for the benefit of folks with muddled heads like mine.