Blogger: Anne Thomas Manes
Open source SOA infrastructure vendor, WSO2, released a 0.1 version of a new open source RESTful SOA registry and repository. Paul Fremantle, WSO2's VP of Technical Sales, described the impetus and rational of this registry in a recent blog post.
Unlike UDDI-based registries, the WSO2 Registry treats each piece of information captured in the registry as an identified resource--i.e., a resource with a URI--which can be accessed and manipulated using the traditional HTTP verbs. The registry also supports remote access and notifications using the Atom Syndication Format (Atom) and the Atom Publishing Protocol (AtomPub).
The basic idea behind a REST registry and repository is a good one. It's simple, lightweight, easily accessible, and searchable. The major concern I have is that runtime systems typically need a bit more structure to enable information exchange among heterogeneous SOA infrastructure components. At the very least, we need a standard (but extensible) data model that specifies what type of information can be obtained from the registry, what the format of each type is, and the required or optional relationships that exist among registry entities. Without a standard data model, this registry will be just another vendor-specific proprietary registry.
The OASIS UDDI-spec technical committee has been talking about closing its doors, so no additional standardization effort is likely come from that quarter. If anyone is going to develop a RESTful registry/repository standard, it will be a brand new effort, and that's likely to take 5+ years to produce a standard.