WS-Routing, active proxies, PEP
The REST argument about pipelining reminds me that HTTP can inherently be proxied, and that Rohit Khare talked about this in his paper Composing Active Proxies to Extend the Web. He said in part:
Want to annotate a Japanese page without advertisements from a HTTP-NG server? Want to book a plane ticket and a hotel room in a single transaction? Active proxies can be neatly reused as black-box components when chained together via HTTP. However, we can envision neater, more efficient ways to enable reuse. The HTTP Protocol Extension Protocol (PEP) transcends the welter of competing APIs to offer a single syntax for naming, specializing, and applying active proxies with finer-grained control. PEP also affords reasoning about compatible extensions and composite extensions.
We are already familiar with many analogues to active proxies as reusable filters. The difference is in the the affordances of the interchange format. UNIX filters operate on ASCII streams; SQL queries operate on relational tables; active proxies and pages operate on Web hypermedia (HTML/XML + HTTP).
Now here's an interesting connection. MS has a proposal on the table called WS-Routing. It sketches out the framework within which loosely-coupled systems will route SOAP messages that are handled in the doc/literal style, rather than the rpc/encoded style. And one of the references in that spec is none other than:
 Rohit Khare, " Composing Active Proxies to Extend the Web"
It appears that SOAP will address the pipelining aspect of the REST argument, though whether in an overcomplicated way is open to (vigorous) debate.
Would SOAP routing and proxying also deal with the addressability aspect of the REST argument? And if so, is this again over-complex? Dunno, that's why I'm asking. Feel free to put in your own $0.02.
Former URL: http://weblog.infoworld.com/udell/2002/02/25.html#a93