Re: Typing and paranoia
Ian Graham wrote: > But that's the goal. Those messages need to be wrapped into a SOAP envelope and the WS > framework, and the constraints of W/S tooling (and XML schemas within that tooling) seem to be > having a deleterious effect on achieving this goal .... But to be fair, that's in part > because the tooling is new, and some obvious features (fault management is poor, handling of > schemas, ) are not well implemented. Unless of course you were to be persuaded that REST is fundamentally aligned with both the architecture of the Web and the document basis of markup (and SOAP is consonant with neither). The internetwork is created by overlaying an addressing scheme on its constituent networks. In the case of the Web, that is the URL. What one can GET at a URL is a document--that is, an entity body of text--which in a well designed system will be marked up with useful labels. Those two premises give us the internetworked analogues of business documents which we need to execute online transactions with the loose coupling that global scale demands. In designing and operating systems for online transactions I am as concerned about interoperability between electronic and paper documents, and between the procedures built around them, as I am about interoperability between different online systems. Business transactions online between dissimilar sytems--i.e., what global scale requires--must also move easily between paper contracts and their online analogues, between online orders and paper order slips. I know of no tool which approaches the ability of markup in plain text documents to accomplish that and to demonstrate plainly--to those paying the bills, to the lawyers approving the contract terms, to the counterparties to transactions--that the online transaction faithfully replicates the traditional paper-based one. Why must a message be obfuscated in a SOAP envelope? If the offline version of the same transaction operates on sending a message, then send a plain text marked up message. If the online transaction works by executing a form of sale, then replicate that same form in markup and PUT it to an appropriate URL where your counterparty might GET it. To do that presents not only the minimum learning curve to those already knowledgeable of the business, but provides the most clearly auditable analogue of well known forms and procedures, instead of obfuscating what the business experts expect within the envelopes and other magical incantations of the technologists.
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