Web services provide the distributed computing middleware that enables machine-to-machine communication over standard Web protocols. Web services are defined most precisely by their intended use rather than by the specific technologies used, since different technologies are popular . Web services are useful in a compositional approach to application development; where certain key features of an integrated application are provided externally through one or more remote systems. Additionally, Web service standards are a popular platform for wrapping existing legacy applications in a more convenient format for interoperability between heterogeneous systems. To provide interoperability Web services should follow standards for formatting application messages, describing service interfaces, and processing messages. Two popular technology choices discussed in this entry are the SOAP  based services and the REST (REpresentational State Transfer)  based...
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