Generally useful

William Henry wrote a little piece called Poor Service Semantics where he criticizes uses of CORBA IDL that offer operations like “runIt” or “doIt”. He writes;

The problem with these is that the semantics are lost as to what the business actually is doing.

Rubbish! “what the business actually is doing” is determined by the implementation of the service. Do you want clients of your services to have dependencies upon those implementations? I thought not. We have a name for that practice, “tight coupling”.

submitPizzaOrder() tells you less about what the business is doing than submitPepperoniPizzaOrder(), but is it somehow less of business semantic as a result? No, of course not, it’s just more general. Likewise, submitOrder() is more general still, and submit() yet more general again … so general in fact that it can’t be generalized any further (i.e. it’s uniform).

doIt, runIt, submit, processMessage, or POST; whatever you want to call your “process this document” semantic, it’s most definitely a business operation, just a highly reusable one.

Tags: soa, rest, mest, webservices.

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