Jim Webber

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Top Stories by Jim Webber

In July 2002, BEA, IBM, and Microsoft released a trio of specifications designed to support business transactions over Web services. These specifications - BPEL4WS, WS-Transaction, and WS-Coordination - together form the bedrock for reliably choreographing Web services-based applications, providing business process management, transactional integrity, and generic coordination facilities respectively. This article introduces the underlying concepts of Web Services Coordination, and shows how a generic coordination framework can be used to provide the foundations for higher-level business processes. In future articles, we will demonstrate how coordination allows us to move up the Web services stack to encompass WS-Transaction and on to BPEL4WS. Coordination In general terms, coordination is the act of one entity (known as the coordinator) disseminating information to ... (more)

Why WSDL Is Not Yet Another Object IDL

There has been much debate lately on what exactly WSDL's purpose is, and much of that debate has focused on whether WSDL is an interface definition language (IDL), or whether WSDL is better used to specify message-level contracts (without any associated operational semantics). In this article we present an argument that dealing with WSDL as a message-level contract description language is the right way to go for building loosely coupled Web services. Interfaces and Contracts Before we delve into the specifics of how WSDL should be used, we need to understand the difference betwee... (more)

Stateful Interactions in Web Services

In July 2003 a consortium of Web services vendors released the Web services Composite Application Framework (WS-CAF) to the community. WS-CAF is comprised of three specifications that together provide a means of reliably composing individual Web services into larger aggregate applications. The cornerstone of this suite is the management of stateful interactions between Web services that is the domain of the WS-Context specification. WS-CAF was subsequently submitted to OASIS and an effort to standardize the framework is currently underway. In January 2004 a group of industry and... (more)

Demystifying Service-Oriented Architecture

With the emergence of Web services into the mainstream the developer has to learn how to architect and build service-oriented systems. While service orientation isn't a new concept, the rapid convergence of the industry on Web services technology has brought the concept of service-oriented architectures (SOA) to the forefront of many developers' minds. Over the last decade we learned how to construct software systems using patterns that adhered to the concepts of object orientation. Now, service orientation requires us to adapt to a new approach to system integration and applica... (more)

Introducing WS-CAF - More than just transactions

Web services have become the integration platform of choice for enterprise applications. Those applications by the very nature of their enterprise-scale components can be complex in structure, which is compounded by the need to share common data or context across business processes supported by those applications. Those processes may be very long lived, and may contain periods of inactivity, for example, where constituent services require user interactions. In response to these issues, WSCAF (Web Services Composite Application Framework) was publicly released in July 2003 after ... (more)