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Web services can be defined as loosely coupled, reusable software components that semantically encapsulate discrete functionality and are distributed and programmatically accessible over standard Internet protocols. Web services have received a lot of hype, the reasons for which are not easily determined. Some of their benefits might even seem to waste away, once we touch on the nitty-gritty details, because Web services per se do not offer a solution to underlying problems. The contributions included in this section delve into some of these issues, including: pitfalls of workflow issues; structuring procedural knowledge into problem-solving methods; discussing how a low initial entry barrier and simple technology are balanced against the long-term goal of easy integration; including semantics in a Web service modeling framework; and building on new kinds of applications such as grid enterprises.
Date of Publication: Jan-Feb 2003