Programming Web Services with XML-RPC is shipping. the sample chapter covers xml-rpc in java. it looks like the book maintains a pretty balanced perspective, which is refreshing:

“On the other hand, XML-RPC is definitely not appropriate in plenty of Java application situations. Much of the Enterprise JavaBeans (EJB) work already relies on RMI, and rewriting it to use XML-RPC would be a remarkable waste of time. Although a snippet of XML-RPC code might be useful as a simple bridge between an EJB-based application and code written for other environments, XML-RPC isn’t designed explicitly to support the many demands of complex enterprise-scale design. Similarly, if you need to pass objects, rather than parameters, betweensystems, you should look into a more sophisticated set of tools than XML-RPC. XML-RPC lets you pass sets of parameters, not complex nested structures with associated method information, back and forth.”

actually, i hadn’t really been paying attention to sun’s level of support for xml-based rpc mechanisms, until i read a representative’s comments to the question of whether or not java programmers need soap:

“The new Java APIs that will support SOAP are JSR 67, Java API for XML Messaging (JAXM), and JSR 101, Java APIs for XML based RPC (JAX/RPC). Both of these Java APIs are generic APIs that can be used with a variety of XML messaging services(e.g., SOAP, W3C XMLP, ebXML Message Service) and XML-based RPC systems (e.g., SOAP, W3C XMLP, XML-RPC). Note that all of these XML communications systems are based on or forked from SOAP. These Java APIs will protect the Java developer from the minor differences between the various XML communications systems.”

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