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151Re: [soap-newbies] New Message: Comments on WSDL

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  • Doug Davis
    Nov 5, 2001
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      Well, I can't speak to that one. But think of it this
      way - if WSDL is a waste of time at least it'll keep
      those meddlers out of your hair (for a while anyway).
      8-)
      -Dug



      "Dave Winer" <dave@...> on 11/05/2001 02:04:20 PM

      Please respond to soap-newbies@yahoogroups.com

      To: <soap-newbies@yahoogroups.com>
      cc:
      Subject: Re: [soap-newbies] New Message: Comments on WSDL



      No I wouldn't be happier -- sorry for being so difficult, but I have to
      keep
      referring to item #6.

      "6. Philosophically this faceoff is directly comparable to the
      tightly-coupled and managed hypertext environments that were theorized
      before the loosely-coupled HTML-HTTP web came along, and wiped out all the
      theories. SOAP alone, without the tight coupling promised by WSDL, is being
      widely deployed, without Microsoft and IBM. This must irk them. But don't
      thwart the spirit of the Web, it's still alive, in this venue."

      BTW, I tried doing an IDL [1] that could possibly work with dynamic
      environments, and it was such a labor with so little love, I believe our
      time is much better spent writing killer apps and worrying less about
      synthetic hurdles that just postpone nirvana.

      Dave

      [1] http://www.xmlrpc.com/alidl


      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "Doug Davis" <dug@...>
      To: <soap-newbies@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Monday, November 05, 2001 10:54 AM
      Subject: Re: [soap-newbies] New Message: Comments on WSDL


      > Ah, so its the static typing of data that you see
      > as the real problem. So, if WSDL allowed you to
      > specify a param (or return value) without specifying
      > its type you'd be happier?
      > -Dug
      >
      >
      > "Dave Winer" <dave@...> on 11/05/2001 01:49:50 PM
      >
      > Please respond to soap-newbies@yahoogroups.com
      >
      > To: <soap-newbies@yahoogroups.com>
      > cc:
      > Subject: Re: [soap-newbies] New Message: Comments on WSDL
      >
      >
      >
      > I don't know what it means for WSDL to be "too static" -- since you're
      > saying that's what I think, I guess I'd better understand what you mean
      by
      > that. ;->
      >
      > The problem is this -- in a dynamic environment, I can't automatically
      > generate WSDL because while I may know the number of incoming params, I
      > have
      > no idea what their type is. Only the programmer knows. And the script may
      > be
      > able to handle lots of different types. Dynamic environments such as our
      > Frontier have built-in type coercion. Same thing is true for return
      values.
      > Without forcing a new constraint on programmers, which I don't want to
      do,
      > there's no way to know what the type of the return value is.
      >
      > So in order for WSDL to work in a dynamic environment as a server the
      > programmer has to write some docs. I suppose you could write the docs in
      > WSDL, but English works better for me, both as a writer and a reader. In
      > all
      > likelihood I have to write the docs anyway, so why not stop there.
      >
      > Somehow we, as an industry, got on this treadmill. Some people at IBM and
      > Microsoft decided that WSDL is a requirement, and they've got a lot of
      > other
      > people echoing them without a clue what they're talking about. It's the
      old
      > tight-coupling vs loose-coupling thing again.
      >
      > Dave
      >
      >
      > ----- Original Message -----
      > From: "Doug Davis" <dug@...>
      > To: <soap-newbies@yahoogroups.com>
      > Sent: Monday, November 05, 2001 10:41 AM
      > Subject: Re: [soap-newbies] New Message: Comments on WSDL
      >
      >
      > > Well, sure that stuff can work but one of the benefits
      > > of WSDL (or supposed benefits 8-) is that it makes it
      > > easier to do this stuff programmatically. I don't see
      > > how WSDL solves it yet - I still believe that a human
      > > will need to be heavily involved in the process, but
      > > I guess I always hoped that WSDL was just a step in the
      > > process of coming up with the solution that will not
      > > require a human. We're not there yet, and probably
      > > not that close - but people are trying. Docs, samples
      > > and mailing lists are a fall-back solution to me.
      > >
      > > It is interesting that you see WSDL as too static, but
      > > Docs and samples are not. Seems like WSDL could change
      > > just as often (and probably with less headaches) than
      > > docs/samples.
      > >
      > > -Dug
      > >
      > > ps. Again - my opinions! 8-)
      > >
      > >
      > > "Dave Winer" <dave@...> on 11/05/2001 01:31:19 PM
      > >
      > > Please respond to soap-newbies@yahoogroups.com
      > >
      > > To: <soap-newbies@yahoogroups.com>
      > > cc:
      > > Subject: Re: [soap-newbies] New Message: Comments on WSDL
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > > Good question!
      > >
      > > 1. Docs.
      > >
      > > 2. Sample code.
      > >
      > > 3. A mail list.
      > >
      > > Now a philosophical question. Why do people ask this question so often.
      > Is
      > > it a mystery? Isn't this how it's always worked?
      > >
      > > Dave
      > >
      > >
      > > ----- Original Message -----
      > > From: "Doug Davis" <dug@...>
      > > To: <soap-newbies@yahoogroups.com>
      > > Sent: Monday, November 05, 2001 10:27 AM
      > > Subject: Re: [soap-newbies] New Message: Comments on WSDL
      > >
      > >
      > > > Well, let's continue this then with the assumptions you've
      > > > mentioned: everything is dynamic and it costs a lot to
      > > > produce something static (like WSDL).
      > > > If I'm a client and I want to talk to your getQuote service
      > > > (ignore for a moment how I know you're even offering it),
      > > > how do I know what to send? You're not going to provide me
      > > > with something like WSDL (too static), so how do I know what
      > > > parameters your getQuote takes? Or what headers you're
      > > > expecting?
      > > > -Dug
      > > >
      > > >
      > > > "Dave Winer" <dave@...> on 11/05/2001 12:47:13 PM
      > > >
      > > > Please respond to soap-newbies@yahoogroups.com
      > > >
      > > > To: <soap-newbies@yahoogroups.com>
      > > > cc:
      > > > Subject: Re: [soap-newbies] New Message: Comments on WSDL
      > > >
      > > >
      > > >
      > > > Doug, please consider that I believe point 6 to be true (and perhaps
      > the
      > > > most important of the points). Therefore I'm not going to propose
      > > something
      > > > here -- because I believe that IDLs make a lot of exclusionary
      > > assumptions
      > > > about the kind of language and runtime environment a developer is
      > using.
      > > I
      > > > don't happen to use an environment that can make good use of them, or
      > > > generate them automatically, and I'm far from alone in that -- most
      Web
      > > > application environments are dynamic -- you don't know the types of
      the
      > > > parameters and can't without adding a lot of overhead for app
      > developers.
      > > > Java and .Net are different, they're static environments, more power
      to
      > > you
      > > > if you like programming that way -- but I like to let the environment
      > do
      > > a
      > > > lot of work for me in handing a type coercion. I'm not going back to
      > > static
      > > > environments. Dave
      > > >
      > > >
      > > >
      > > > ----- Original Message -----
      > > > From: "Doug Davis" <dug@...>
      > > > To: <soap-newbies@yahoogroups.com>
      > > > Sent: Monday, November 05, 2001 9:07 AM
      > > > Subject: Re: [soap-newbies] New Message: Comments on WSDL
      > > >
      > > >
      > > > > (Speaking just for myself - ignore the mail address 8-)
      > > > >
      > > > > Dave wrote:
      > > > > >It can only work in static environments such as Java and .Net and
      > not
      > > in
      > > > > >dynamic environments that are popular with Web developers,
      including
      > > but
      > > > > not
      > > > > >limited to Perl, Python, PHP, and UserLand Frontier.
      > > > >
      > > > > If WSDL does not work in a particular use-case then propose
      something
      > > > > that will - if its good enough people (including IBM and MS) I'm
      sure
      > > > will
      > > > > be interesting in playing too.
      > > > >
      > > > > >Today WSDL is not a basis for interop. If there is interop it's
      only
      > > > > >between Java and .Net.
      > > > >
      > > > > I don't believe the guys on SOAPBuilders would agree with this -
      I'm
      > > > > pretty sure there are other SOAP processors joining in.
      > > > >
      > > > > >There can be no significant support for this by independent
      > developers
      > > > > >because it shuts them out.
      > > > >
      > > > > Whether or not it shuts people out is no indication of whether the
      > > > > technology/ideas behind WSDL are good or not.
      > > > > I'm no huge fan of WSDL - but it seems to fit a need - and I'm sure
      > > when
      > > > > (not "if" but "when") something else comes along if it is better
      than
      > > > WSDL
      > > > > people will try to support it.
      > > > >
      > > > > >These companies want the endorsement of the W3C. They're trying to
      > > > > redefine
      > > > > >the rules so that only their products can satisfy them. This is a
      > good
      > > > > test of
      > > > > >the W3C's independence from the big companies.
      > > > > >Philosophically this faceoff is directly comparable to the
      > > > tightly-coupled
      > > > >
      > > > > >and managed hypertext environments that were theorized before the
      > > > > >loosely-coupled HTML-HTTP web came along, and wiped out all the
      > > > theories.
      > > > > SOAP
      > > > > >alone, without the tight coupling promised by WSDL, is being
      widely
      > > > > deployed,
      > > > > >without Microsoft and IBM. This must irk them. But don't thwart
      the
      > > > spirit
      > > > > of
      > > > > >the Web, it's still alive, in this venue.
      > > > > >Tell Microsoft and IBM to go back to the drawing board. It's the
      > right
      > > > > >thing to do, maybe next time around they won't create such a
      > > > self-serving
      > > > > >specification that goes against the interests of independent
      > > developers.
      > > > >
      > > > > So what's your proposal? Or, if you've offered one why is it not
      > > > > taking off?
      > > > >
      > > > > -Dug
      > > > >
      > > > >
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      > > > >
      > > > >
      > > > >
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