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Subject: Heffner Report on Web Services Reminiscent of Previous Reports

Even those in the hype curve, have to take a dose of reality some days:

    Forrester Narrows List of Specs for Web Services
    Rich Seeley, SearchWebServices.com

    Web services developers can spend time keeping track of all the
    standards floating around or they can devote their time and energy to
    the few they need for the project they are working on, which is the
    advice analyst Randy Heffner offers. Heffner, vice president, Forrester
    Research, Inc., has expended a lot of time the past few months studying
    SOA and Web services specs and surveying developers working with them
    and has concluded that conservative adopters working on core
    connectivity need little more than SOAP and WSDL. He also has
    recommendations for those he labels more aggressive, but he warns them
    to look before they leap into a standard or spec where there is little
    or no evidence that it will actually work in an application. "What it
    really comes down to is how conservative are you as a technology
    and what immediate business value can you get from any of these specs,"
    he said. "The more conservative you are then the fewer of these specs
    you actually take a look at. If you're more aggressive then you better
    be building budgets for prototyping and testing and proving these
    things out before you commit to using them." Most Web services
    developers will have to work out a balance between those two extremes,
    he said. The standards and specifications for conservatives and those
    for the more aggressive are identified in his Forrester report titled,
    "Web Services Specifications: Core Web Services." For the conservative
    developer, the list is short: SOAP 1.1, WSDL 1.1, SOAP Messages with
    Attachments, WS-I Basic Profile 1.0, and WS-I Basic Profile 1.1. While
    SOAP and WSDL hark back to the early days of Web services, Heffner
    said they provide the basic foundation on which myriad other standards,
    proposed standards and vendor specifications rest. "The key way to
    understand the growth of additional specifications is to view what SOAP
    and WSDL give you as a core messaging model," he explained. "If you've
    got two end points and they both support SOAP, and the development
    environment supports WSDL, you get a basic connectivity. All the other
    specs are about improving the quality of service of that basic
    connection." Beyond keeping up with advances in SOAP and WSDL at W3C,
    he recommends that developers keep an eye on what is happening at Web
    Services Interoperability Organization (WS-I)...


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