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Name: John McDowall
Location: Redwood City, California, US

Thursday, March 10, 2005

It Ain't Easy to be Simple - but it is important to understand and communicate

I took the liberty of expanding on the title of this article It Ain't Easy to be Simple by Mike Champion. The article surprised me it was on the front page of MSDN yesterday indicating that the REST - WS debate is moving into the center of attention.

I am not sure I would argue that HTTP/REST is elegant, but rather it is a good approach to working with what we have. Many years ago circa 1997 someone said to me that HTTP is the last protocol that will be invented - the comment stuck but it was not till many years later that I realized the truth of it. Essentially the weight of the installed base of plumbing we have installed at both desktop and server virtually requires that HTTP exists everywhere for at least the next few decades. I think XML is moving into the same position as a data representation language. Therefore it is only natural that they come together to communicate meaning in machine-machine and machine-human conversations. These essence of the debate is do we take a minimalist approach to defining the conversation (REST) or do we take the solve every problem approach which is the WS-*&%$# approach?


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