Java and .NET are not the only technologies that need Web Services. There are third-party products available that allow Web Services to integrate with CORBA, COBOL, C++, and other legacy systems. By using Web Services with these systems, a corporation saves money because legacy systems don’t need to be replaced. Instead, by adding a Web Services layer on top of these systems, the information these systems contain is available to applications that consume Web Services.
For example, if a corporation such as a bank utilizes a lot of COBOL and needs to have their Web site communicate with these systems, a Web service layer on top of the systems allows this type of communication. The cost of the software is minimal compared to replacing large legacy implementations such as a billing system at a large telecom or transaction software at a large bank. Figure 1.5 illustrates how a Web Services layer on top of a legacy COBOL banking system can bring data from a legacy COBOL banking system to a .NET- (or Java-) based Web site.
Figure 1.5: How Web Services May Bring Data From A Legacy COBOL Banking System To A .NET- (Or Java-) Based Web Site.