When Web Services and SOAP were emerging technologies, Microsoft really took the lead in making the technology a reality. For Java to have access to Web Services, many third-party vendors rushed Java Web Services technology to the market. For a while, using a third-party tool was the only option for a Java developer unless they wanted to create their own implementation.
With Apache Axis, many more opportunities are opened for the Java developer. Instead of being forced to purchase a tool, one can simply download Apache Axis and see if Web Services fit into the infrastructure or solve their problems. The fact that Axis provides tools to generate WSDL makes it easy for Java-based Web Services to communicate with Microsoft’s .NET initiative. How to perform this integration is covered in Chapter 9.