Last month, in my column on DMReview.com, I provided a nontechnical introduction to some of the reasons for the interest in Web services. The complexity of remote procedure call (RPC) approaches for different application program interfaces (APIs) has meant that code module integration and reuse has been time-consuming and difficult. Web services and associated XML technologies have been developed to address real-time program and code module integration. This month we will further examine the concepts of Web services.

Most enterprises have a common problem: They use different business processes and procedures to do the same thing where a common standard procedure could be used instead. For example, a common problem is experienced in updating a changed customer address in each of the different versions of customer data in an enterprise. The customer address may need to be changed in the customer database (in the sales department), the client database (in the credit control department) and the debtor database (in the accounts receivable section of the finance department).

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