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Semantic Web Services - Intelligent Web Services, Web Service Technology

software enterprise business applications

Definition: The W3C Semantic Web initiative introduces new Web Services which include appropriate service description mechanisms.

Web Services promise a new level of service on top of the current web. However, in order to employ their full potential, appropriate service description mechanisms need to be developed. The W3C Semantic Web initiative intends to overcome these problems by introducing new Web Service methodologies and standards.

Intelligent Web Services

Before the Web Service infrastructure can realize the vision of automated service composition, more work needs to be done. Current technology around UDDI, WSDL, and SOAP provide limited support in mechanizing service recognition, service configuration and combination (i.e., realizing complex workflows and business logics with Web Services), service comparison and automated negotiation. In a business environment the vision of flexible and autonomous Web Service translates into automatic cooperation between enterprise services. Any enterprise requiring a business interaction with another enterprise can automatically discover and select the appropriate optimal Web Services relying on selection policies. Services can be invoked automatically and payment processes can be initiated. Any necessary mediation would be applied based on data and process ontologies and the automatic translation and semantic interoperation. Supply chain relationships where an enterprise who manufactures short-lived goods must frequently and dynamically seek suppliers and buyers, is one example. Therefore, instead of employees constantly searching for suppliers and buyers, the Web Service infrastructure does it automatically within the defined constraints. Other applications areas for this technology are Enterprise-Application Integration, eWork, and Knowledge Management.

Web Service Technology

The current Web is mainly a collection of information but does not yet provide support in processing this information, i.e. in using the computer as a computational device. Recent efforts around UDDI, WSDL, and SOAP try to lift the Web to a new level of service. Software applications can be accessed and executed via the Web based on the idea of Web Services. Web Services can significantly increase the Web architecture’s potential, by providing a way of automated program communication, discovery of services, etc. Therefore, they are the focus of much interest from various software development companies. Web Services connect computers and devices with each other using the Internet to exchange data and combine data in new ways.

The key to Web Services is on-the-fly software composition through the use of loosely coupled, reusable software components. This has fundamental implications for technical and business terms. Software can be delivered and paid for in fluid streams as opposed to packaged products. It is possible to achieve automatic ad hoc interoperability between systems to accomplish organizational tasks: Examples include business applications, such as automated procurement and supply chain management, and military applications. Web Services can be completely decentralized and distributed over the Internet and accessed by a wide variety of communications devices.

Organizations are liberated from complex and expensive software integration to focus instead on the value of their offerings and mission critical tasks. In the Semantic Web Services scenario, dynamic enterprises and value chains become achievable; those enterprises, without such technologies, may lose competitive advantage.

Semantics Standards and Recommendations [next] [back] Semantic Web - Introduction, Benefits and Detailed Example, OWL Syntax and Description of Selected Key Aspects1, Classes and Subclasses

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