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Sunday, March 27, 2005

SOAP : From Brain Dead Onto Real Death!!

Carlos Peres in a series of postings says, writes SOAP is Comatose But Not Officially Dead. Carlos writes," SOAP is comatose, but hasn't declared legally dead by either IBM or Microsoft. SOAP is supposed to be the underpinnings of Web Services. Between 2002 and late 2004, despite the knowledge of SOAP’s tight coupling approach, the industry by and large persisited with SOAP.
With the rise of REST and the fall of SOAP, denial has been now replaced with panic". Carlos adds, "The RESTful approach has now born fruit. Applications like BlogLines, Flickr, Mappr, Del.icio.us and 43Things are revealing that proof is in the pudding. All of these have shunned SOAP in favor of more RESTful designs. Carlos demonstrates through a no. of blog posts the disdain with SOAP by various people in different contexts. Some of the writins include the likes of - Distinctions between enterprise and "consumer" are breaking down. REST is evidently where that convergence is being played out, not WS-I".
While examing SOAP’s interoperability- Carlos writes, "Of course, the last 2 tips are the most revealing of all. If everything is sent over the wire as a XML document that is described by an XSD then it all boils down to how easy you can work with these documents. That is working with XML api's like DOM and XPath. The enclosing envelope should be irrelevant to the concerns of the average developer; it should be treated like just any other transport protocol. All that extra machinery provided to support the SOAP envelope is precisely that, extra machinery and has never been shown to improve interoperability. Therefore, in terms of effort, interoperability via SOAP is not any easier than doing it in REST. In fact, its actually more insidious because a developer is all too easily lulled in the fallacy that an object is the same as the XML document" and concludes SOAP is brain dead..

In a follow through posting, Carlos writes,The last nail may have been when Yahoo announced its Web Services. REST was awarded the design win over SOAP. The Yahoo! Search Web Services are all REST services. That means you can easily construct request URLs that will work in your browser, on the command line, and in your code. Carlos concludes,"The day REST is synonymous with "Web Services" is the day SOAP is truly dead, and that day may have arrived a day too early for many".There is no doubt that SOAP has failed to live upto its promise and the industry is now pushing REST in a big way.

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