First and foremost I would like to thank Nat Torkington, editor
and friend. He brought this opportunity to me, and was amazingly
patient as I struggled to get up to speed with the materials I was
Ryan Dietrich introduced me to XML-RPC (and Radiohead's "Kid A" CD) while he was contracting to Red Hat. I'm also grateful to Kevin Greene, Stephen Nelson, Mike Reynolds, and Sky Schultz from my time as a contractor at Hewlett-Packard, and to Matt Lanier, Paul Lindner, Jason Miller, Garth Webb, Tom Lancaster, Eric Chen, and Bob Moss from my time at Red Hat.
Thanks to all the technical reviewers, and
Finally, I'd like to
I owe a debt of gratitude to many people who one way or another made this book possible.
I would like to thank to my wonderful coauthor, Randy Ray, who
Thanks are due to the people in the Perl and SOAP communities; their enthusiastic support, contributions, comments, and insistence on clarity have all made some difference to the book.
Thanks to our wonderful technical editor, Nathan Torkington, who was gently persistent in his effort to get this book happen and contributed his knowledge and experience to make it great.
And last, but definitely not the least, I wouldn't be able to finish the writing without my family's patience and love (or maybe I would, but what would be the point). Even though they have no interest in the content of the book (at least for now), my son Daniil and my wife Alena provided the support and encouragement I needed. Thank you!
Chapter 1. Introduction to Web Services
The world is full of useful data and services
If you want to write a program to book a flight, check how much paid time off you have accrued, or find all the shows on TV that feature the stars of
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Sure, you could screenscrape HTML from web sites such as expedia.com and tvguide.com, but that puts you at the mercy of the web designers of those sites. Every time they decide to make their pages look prettier, you'll have to rewrite your screenscraper.
You might be able to wangle access to the machine that runs the payroll system, but it's
Web services are all about enabling computers to communicate with each other, opening up services and data. Built on
In this chapter you'll learn a bit about the history of web services and the current lie of the land ”what systems you can choose from, where the hype exceeds reality, and so on.