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Understanding Web Services

At its very simplest, a Web service is a Web-based application that can communicate and exchange data with other such applications over the Internet without regard for application, platform, syntax, or architecture. The Web Services technology is a new, standardized way of communicating between—and integrating with—applications that connect to the Internet. Web services are made possible by industry standards such as the Transport Content Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) and Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP). Web services use additional agreed-upon standards such as XML for representing structured data; Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) for communicating data; Web Services Description Language (WSDL) for describing data and services; and Universal Description, Discovery, and Integration (UDDI) for locating published Web services in public or private registries.

Due in part to the attention Web Services has received, some of the biggest names in the IT industry are making these applications an important component in their platform architecture:


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