October 27, 2001 - Web Services -- The Next Revolution | WebReference

October 27, 2001 - Web Services -- The Next Revolution

Yehuda Shiran October 27, 2001
Web Services -- The Next Revolution
Tips: October 2001

Yehuda Shiran, Ph.D.
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Revolutions are a way of life in the computer industry. Only 20 years ago, the world was still in the mainframe era. Few people had access or used computers, and when they did, it was only through the nearest computer center. Three innovations changed all that: the PC, the GUI, and the Internet. Since then, standards such as HTML and HTTP have exponentially increased people's use of the Internet. This base protocol for viewing content on the Web (and the associated software for browsing this content) grew Web usage to what you are familiar with today. The Web became a key activity in the daily lives of businesses, employees, and consumers.

As a result of the changes in how businesses and consumers use the Web, the industry is converging on a new computing model that enables a standard way of building applications and processes to connect and exchange information over the Web. This new Internet-based integration methodology, called "XML Web services," enables applications, machines, and business processes to work together in a revolutionary way. The widespread support around XML assures that businesses will cooperate in the Internet-based economy with this XML Web services model.

Microsoft would like to convince us that Web services is the next revolution after the Web and HTTP. Judging from the Sun-Microsoft war on which Web services environment is better, Microsoft may be able to prove it.

You can call Web services from JavaScript. In upcoming tips and columns we'll cover the motivation and the implementation of Web services, and how to use them from JavaScript.