Gauntlet Tossing

Yesterday, I proposed a new issue to the TAG regarding what I consider factual errors in the recently published draft of the Web Services Architecture document concerning the architectural property of visibility. You can read the text for yourself, but I thought I’d explain why I raised this issue and not the more general and abundantly obvious “Web Services are incompatible with Web architecture” one.

My principle motivation was that I wanted a very well defined, bite-size topic for the TAG to chew on; one that could be resolved in short order, but that still had “architectural impact” and relevance to Web architecture. In addition, I wanted to pick a topic that the WSA WG had already agreed was important, but believed they had it covered. My end goal is that having this issue resolved in my favour will be enough of a boot-to-the-head to the WG, that they may see where they’ve erred, especially as the resolution will presumably drive home the critical point that application protocols define application interfaces.

It’s a bit of a risk; perhaps the WG members won’t see it that way and I’ll have wasted an opportunity. But I figure that all I need to do is to convince one staunch Web services proponent, and then the house of cards will topple. Plus, it’s unlikely that discussion on this topic will be able to avoid the more general problems with Web services, so there’s an opportunity for additional issues to be raised by others.

Smart move, or missed opportunity? Time will tell.

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