UWS as a REST protocol

Guy Rixon gtr at ast.cam.ac.uk
Mon Feb 26 09:47:16 PST 2007


at the moment, I'm much more enthusiastic about REST than SOAP for new
protocols (and UWS is not deployed anywhere so it's still new) and
particularly in respect of extensions to DAL services and the like.  I haven't
made any _production_ REST services yet, mind, but there is a simple prototype
at http://ag01.ast.cam.ac.uk:8082/UWS-1/ that tries out some of what I wrote
in the Note.

I think REST usually wins for services that are (a) public facing and and
registered in our kind of registry; (b) client-server. In this case, we've
already decided that they have URIs and a calling pattern that HTTP can
support. If we had some new kind of service, perhaps a genuine P2P messaging
kind of thing, then we might find that SOAP-over-something-other-than-HTTP was
better than REST.

If there arose a righteous SOAP toolkit that genuinely made SOAP both easy and
flexible, then maybe it would become better than REST in practical terms. This
hasn't happened yet.

I wouldn't want to deprecate existing IVOA protocols just because they're
based on SOAP. I'm not that much of a convert. :)


On Mon, 26 Feb 2007, Markus Dolensky wrote:

> Dear Guy,
> It's great that you are implementing a REST prototype that one can
> (hopefully) look at.
> > My personal preference is to work, from here on, just on the RESTful form of
> > UWS and to abandon the SOAP version. Since, AFAIK, I'm the only one who has
> > writen any SOAP UWS code I think this should be OK. Please let me know your
> > views.
> Going one step further, do you recon not to use SOAP at all when writing
> new services? (because it'll be harder to make them behave UWS'ish later on)
> Greetings,
> Markus

Guy Rixon 				        gtr at ast.cam.ac.uk
Institute of Astronomy   	                Tel: +44-1223-337542
Madingley Road, Cambridge, UK, CB3 0HA		Fax: +44-1223-337523

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